Tuesday 20 February 2018

Jones strikes to lift brave Wolves out of drop zone

Carl Markham

David Jones' solitary strike lifted Wolves out of the relegation zone as his first Premier League goal of the season put a dent in Tottenham's hopes of taking back fourth place at Molineux.

The midfielder started the move which resulted in him side-footing home a cross from Matt Jarvis in the 27th minute and Wolves could also have had a penalty when Michael Dawson clipped Jarvis in the first half.

Tottenham's best chance fell to Niko Kranjcar before they had gone behind, but he shot too close to goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann.

The result was huge for Wolves, with their first victory in seven league matches -- and their second over Spurs this season -- more than well deserved.

Kevin Doyle went down claiming a penalty in the 18th minute later, but the challenge from Sebastien Bassong was more shoulder-to-shoulder and initial contact was outside the area.

Spurs went straight down the other end and Kranjcar should have scored after Defoe had back-heeled Eidur Gudjohnsen's pass into his path, but he shot too close to Hahnemann and the goalkeeper deflected the ball for a corner with his legs.

Wolves had their best chance moments later when Doyle broke through on the right, but his touch gave him too narrow an angle and as Dawson got across to challenge, he fired a shot across the six-yard area which Bassong turned behind.

But the hosts took the lead with the simplest of goals which came out of nowhere in the 27th minute. Jones played the ball out to Jarvis on the left and continued his run to side-foot home the cross first time from 15 yards.

Wolves could have had a penalty two minutes later when Dawson clipped Jarvis as he ran into the area but referee Mark Clattenburg waved play on. Jarvis almost added the second when he cut in on to his right foot and drilled in a shot which goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes turned around the near post.

The visitors looked brighter in the second half and Kranjcar had a shot deflected just past the near post but Wolves still looked capable of getting a second and Doyle's lob from Stephen Ward's pass over the top beat Gomes but dropped wide of the target.

On the hour Wolves boss Mick McCarthy replaced left-back Ward with George Elokobi, while Peter Crouch came on for Gudjohnsen and Luka Modric came on for Kranjcar in an attempt to inject more creativity.

The visitors stepped up the pressure in the final 10 minutes, but Wolves soaked it all up to register back-to-back home clean sheets in the league for the first time in the campaign.

Irish Independent

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