Bristol City 1 (Kodjia 45)
A goal from Bristol City’s Jonathan Kodgia just before the interval proved to be the deciding factor in a tightly fought out contest at Ashton Gate although Wolves' players were furious at the final whistle that they were denied a last gasp penalty.
Wolves were unchanged for the game following the heartening result against Birmingham City at the weekend.
Two former Molineux youth graduates were in the City squad – winger Elliott Bennett started and defender Mark Little was named as a substitute. Just over a thousand Wolves’ supporters had made their way down the M5 for the game.
Wanderers, wearing their all blue kit, kicked off in a stadium much transformed since their last visit albeit with only three sides open with the framework of a new main stand taking shape.
Marlon Pack got in the first attempt of the game – a decent effort from distance that drifted wide before, in the seventh minute, James Henry won the game’s first corner which he took himself.
The ball was headed out to the far side where Nathan Byrne won possession and cut into the area before lifting a shot wide of the far post.
City threatened through Derrick Williams who found some space and ran into the box. Emi Martinex was quickly off his line and rather than trying a shot the City defender opted to square the ball and Mike Williamson was there to clear.
After 15 minutes there was a chance at the other end for Williamson who was up for a corner. The home defence failed to clear its lines and when the ball ran to the on loan defender on the edge of the box he hit a shot that looked destined for goal until it hit Nathan Baker and bounced to safety.
Korey Smith hit a fierce drive that went straight to Martinez but it was Wolves that looked to carry the more serious threat with Henry and Dominic Iorfa linking up well on the right flank.
Smith went into the book for dragging back Byrne before City won their first corner after 33 minutes. Pack took the kick but his efforts were wasted as the referee blew for an infringement as the ball came across.
On the stroke of half-time City took the lead as Kodjia powerfully headed home Bennett’s cross from the right.
Half-Time: City 1 Wolves 0
Kenny Jackett made a double switch during the break replacing Benik Afobe and Byrne with Grant Holt and Adam Le Fondre.
Dave Edwards did have the ball in the City net four minutes after the restart after City keeper Frank Fielding had pushed out Kevin McDonald’s low shot but the cheers of the Wolves fans at the far end were soon wiped out by the offside flag.
Martinez had to make a flying leap to keep out Kieran Agard’s long-range drive and then the Argentinian keeper had to leave his area to clear as Agard threatened again.
Martinez was called into action once more in the 67th minute as he smothered a cross-shot from Kodjia whilst Fielding fell backwards but still managed to hold on to Henry’s chip from the corner of the area.
Martinez saved a 25-yard ground shot from Luke Freeman and then Kodjia struck a thunderous shot on the run that only just cleared the bar.
Matt Doherty replaced Conor Coady for the closing minutes as Wolves tried to find a route through a resolute City defence. When Henry did get a shot away it bounced clear of a defender.
As the game drifted into the four minutes of stoppage time, Wolves were awarded a free-kick in the City half. But there was only more frustration as the referee blew for a foul as the ball dropped into the area from McDonald’s kick.
Just before the end in a scramble in the home goalmouth Doherty went down after appearing to be shoved in the back (pictured). Appeals for a spot kick, however, fell on deaf ears.
City: Fielding, Williams, Flint, Ayling, Smith (capt), Agard (Wilbraham 88), Bennett (Little 79), Freeman (Moore 90+2), Baker, Pack, Kodjia.
Unused subs: Hamer, Cox, Reid, Bryan.
Booking: Smith (28 – foul)
Wolves: Martinez, Iorfa, Golbourne, Edwards, Batth (capt), Williamson, Henry, Coady (Doherty 78), Afobe (Le Fondre 45), McDonald, Byrne (Holt 45).
Unused subs: Ikeme, Price, Ojo, Graham.
Referee: S. Hooper.
Attendance: 15,517 (1,173 away supporters).