Wolverhampton Wanderers 4:3 Leicester City
Some woeful defending cost City dear at Molineux, with a late Wolves goal earning them a win in a lively lunchtime encounter…
Claude Puel made three changes with Barnes – making his Premier League debut – Gray and Simpson in for Choudhury, Albrighton and Maddison.
It was an incident packed game from the start and Mendy picked up a 2nd minute booking for a foul on Jiménez.
A minute later Vinagre went down the right and cut a ball back for Neves who had acres of space to line up a superb curling 25 yarder that Schmeichel finger-tipped over at full stretch.
But City found themselves a goal down by the 4th minute. Gray loset the ball in midfield, Moutinho hared down the right and delivered a cross for Jota to outwit Simpson, and prod the ball home from six yards.
Wolves almost gifted City an instant reply when Patrício miscontrolled a backpass and then dwelt on the ball allowing Vardy to nip in and rob him, but the Wolves keeper recovered to block Vardy’s attempt from a tight angle.
Gray then delivered a corner from the left which Maguire headed over from two yards, but the ref judged it to be a foul on Patrício. Moments later Maguire had a spell of treatment after injuring himself while tackling Jota.
City then fell further behind in the 12th minute. Moutinho swung over a corner from the left, and Bennett rose above Maguire to nod home. City ‘zonal marking’ made it all too easy.
At 2-0 down City then had a decent spell. They won a series of corners and Gray had one shot blocked, sent another wide and had another saved by Patrício.
Wolves then broke upfield and should have gone 3-0 up but Jota sent a header from six yards straight at Schmeichel.
As half time approached Wolves went close again when Jimenez rounded Maguire and fired in a shot that Schmeichel did well to block with his leg.
Tempers began to fray just before the half time whistle with the home crowd demanding a penalty for a Simpson push on Jota, and then Jota and Ricardo were both booked.
Whatever Claude Puel said during the break, it appeared to work as City were level just six minutes into the second half.
In the 47th minute City raced upfield and Vardy sent Gray down the right channel. Despite the attentions of three defender Gray outsprinted them before slotting the ball past Patrício.
Vardy then sent Barnes in down the left and his fierce angled drive was tipped over the bar by the Wolves keeper. But Barnes didn’t have long to wait for a goal.
A strong run down the left by Chilwell was blocked by Jonny, but the loose ball sat up nicely for Barnes who lashed it home, via a deflection off Coady.
In the midst of all this excitement Maguire, who hadn’t been able to shrug off his first half knock, was replaced by Evans.
City were running the game at this stage, though they had another midfielder on a yellow card when Ndidi took Moutinho out.
But Wolves turned the tide around the hour mark, and then regained their lead in the 64th minute. Neves sent a precise 60 yard ball to Jota down the left channel, who left Morgan for dead before crashing a shot past Schmeichel.
Claude Puel made another change in the 73rd minute, bringing Maddison on for Barnes.
Maddison had a chance to level when Ricardo sent in a low cross from the byline, but he scuffed his shot wide of the near post from close in.
But Maddison made amends in the 87th minute, delivering a superb free kick from the left that saw Morgan rising above three gold shirts to nod home the equaliser.
But sadly City were not to get a point for their efforts in a hugely entertaining game.
Deep into time added on, City were a little too cavalier in trying to find a winner, and they got caught out. Another raking pass from Neves found Jimenez down the right and his cross picked out Jota who completed his hat trick with a precise sidefooted finish.
Nuno Espirito Santo was red-carded for invading the pitch to join in the celebrations, while Claude Puel buried his face in his hands in despair.
While the rest of the nation will have enjoyed one of the best matches of the season, City’s defending for all four goals was atrocious and the slide down the table continues.
Wolves: Rui Patrício, Bennett, Coady, Saïss, Castro Otto, Dendoncker, Neves, João Moutinho (Gibbs-White 81), Vinagre (Doherty 73), Jiménez, Jota.
Substitutes: Cavaleiro, Hélder Costa, Ruddy, Giles, Traoré.
Leicester: Schmeichel, Simpson (Iheanacho 83), Morgan, Maguire, (Evans 48), Chilwell, Mendy, Ndidi, Ricardo, Gray, Barnes (Maddison 73), Vardy.
Substitutes: Albrighton, Ward, Fuchs, Choudhury.
Referee: C Kavanagh. Attendance: 31,278.
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