Southampton 2 (Sharp 22, Puncheon 69)
Wolves ended their pre-season warm-up with a 2-0 defeat against Southampton at a near deserted St Mary’s Stadium. The newly promoted home side scored a goal in each half of a decidedly low profile game.
The opening exchanges saw Guly do Prado screw a 20-yard shot well wide before a Stephen Ward corner was headed clear by the home defence.
Wolves should have been ahead in the ninth minute when Jack Stephens was beaten by the bounce of the ball from Ward’s lofted pass. Sylvan Ebanks-Blake took possession and ran in on goal but he placed his shot too close to Paulo Gazzaniga who dived to save.
The Argentinian keeper then made a more routine stop from Björn Sigurdarson’s low drive before Carl Ikeme had to acrobatically turn over Nathaniel Clyne’s cross after the ball appeared to catch the wind in the blustery conditions and drift towards the goal.
Southampton moved into the lead in the 22nd minute when Adam Lallana’s low cross eluded Do Prado but not Billy Sharp who swept the ball home at the far post.
There was a brief flare-up after Karl Henry’s challenge on Richard Chaplow and both players were given a lecture by the referee.
Chaplow then supplied the cross for Sharp to loop a header over the bar from ten yards out.
There wasn’t much to choose between the sides and a half of few clear cut chances ended with Ikeme deflecting Do Prado’s shot behind for the first of two unproductive corners.
Half-Time: Saints 1 Wolves 0
The first attack of the new half came from the home team with Chaplow heading high and wide after a short cross from Sharp.
Sigurdarson ran from inside his own half to the edge of the Saints area but, before he could get a shot in, Jos Hooiveld raced across the boot the ball out for a throw-in.
Ebanks-Blake broke away on the left and fired over a low cross that was turned wide by David Davis as he charged in at the far post.
Do Prado volleyed high over the bar after a cross from Lallana as both sides began to make changes – Kevin Foley and Christophe Berra replacing Davis and Richard Stearman respectively for Wolves.
In the 69th minute, Southampton went two up after Jason Puncheon picked up a loose ball and advanced before rifling a low shot into the bottom corner from just outside the box.
Substitute Steve de Ridder could have added to Wanderers’ woes but he fired wide of the near post after Sharp had set up the chance.
Matt Doherty, for Ronald Zubar, and Eggert Jonsson, for Ebanks-Blake, were late changes for Wolves and, just before the end, Anthony Forde dragged a shot wide from 30-yards out.
Saints: Gazzaniga, Clyne (Richardson 60), Stephens (Fonte 60), Hooiveld (Hooiveld 81), Fox, Hammond (capt) (Chambers 81), Chaplow (S. Davis 71), Lallana (Ward-Prowse 71), Do Prado (De Ridder 75), Puncheon (Rodriguez 75), Sharp.
Unused sub: K. Davis.
Wolves: Ikeme, Zubar (Doherty 81), Ward, Doumbia, Johnson, Stearman (Berra 66), D. Davis (Foley 66), Henry (capt), Ebanks-Blake (Jonsson 81), Sigurdarsson, Forde.
Unused sub: McCarey.
Referee: A. Davies.
Attendance: 3,978 (420 away supporters).