Wolves see off Rovers in extra time
Wolves 1 (Enobakhare 98)
Bristol Rovers 0
It took an extra-time goal from Bright Enobakhare to finally overcome the spirited efforts of League One Bristol Rovers who were in with a shout right up until the final whistle.
Just three players remained from the side that started against Nottingham Forest on Saturday – Conor Coady, Danny Batth and Roderick Miranda whilst there was a debut for Danish defender Oskar Buur Rasmussen.
Rovers kicked-off attacking the South Bank end but it wasn’t long before Wolves launched a series of attacks. The visitors had everyone back for Ben Marshall’s free-kick near the left-hand corner of the Rovers box after Jack Price had been fouled by Billy Bodin but the ball was unceremoniously booted clear.
Two Marshall corners in quick succession came to nothing and when Michal Zyro ran on to a through ball from Marshall, his low shot was blocked.
After a Rovers corner taken by Tom Nichols had been headed clear by Batth, Zyro twice went close to giving Wolves the lead. His first time shot from the 18-yard line was a foot too high and then, after good work from Enobakhare who delivered a low centre, Zyro scooped over at the near post.
Bodin threaded a pass to Chris Lines and his shot was deflected behind for another Nichols corner and once again Batth headed away.
A minute later Batth was in action at the other end heading wide from a Marshall corner.
In the 27th minute Marshall was fouled by Lines 25-yards out and when Marshall took the free-kick himself he steered the ball over the wall but straight into the arms of keeper Sam Slocombe.
Nichols had the near 2,000 strong crowd from the West Country on their feet with a rasping 20-yard drive that was narrowly wide of the far post.
Half-Time: Wolves 0 Rovers 0
There was little goalmouth action of note after the break until the 53rd minute when Enobakhare met Marshall’s cross on the full and drew a great save from Slocombe. From Marshall’s corner Batth headed over.
Will Norris, in the home goal, needed two attempts to claim a low 25-yard drive from Ollie Clarke before Ellis Harrison was booked for a foul on Batth.
On the hour Barry Douglas went on for Sylvain Deslandes and in the 68th minute Nuno made a double switch with Ivan Cavaleiro and Connor Ronan replacing Zyro and Marshall.
Douglas was booked for pulling back Liam Sercombe before Rovers went within inches of taking a shock lead as Marc Bola’s low shot was touched onto the foot of the far post by Norris.
Batth was the next to see yellow after he had fouled Clarke and from the resultant free-kick Norris saved from Nichols.
Slocombe did well to keep out Enobakhare’s low drive and, after Douglas saw his attempt blocked, Wolves came within a whisker of winning it in the last minute of normal time as Miranda’s shot came back off the bar.
In stoppage time Nicols was booked for pulling back Alfred N’Diaye.
90 minutes: Wolves 0 Rovers 0
Donovan Wilson replaced Rasmussen at the start of extra-time which was into its eighth minute when the deadlock was finally broken.
Price’s excellent through pass dissected the Bristol defence and Douglas cut in on the overlap and crossed for Enobakhare to bury a right foot shot past Slocombe.
Telford saw his shot saved by Norris and Rory Gaffney was wide with a header as Rovers looked to hit back.
Tom Broadbent objected to Price’s challenge and after a brief bout of pushing and shoving, Price was booked for the foul and N’Diaye for getting too involved in the ‘afters’.
Just before the extra-time interval, Norris pulled off a fine save from Gaffney’s angled effort.
In the 111th minute Telford missed a golden chance when, unmarked in front of goal, he headed wide. But Norris was soon back in the thick of things with a great save from Bodin’s shot from a tight angle.
Shortly before the final whistle Rovers were reduced to ten men when Tom Lockyer was red carded for pulling back Wilson who was through on goal.
Wolves: Norris, Rasmussen (Wilson 90), Deslandes (Douglas 62), Miranda, Batth (capt), Coady, Zyro (Cavaleiro 68), Price, Enobakhare, N’Diaye, Marshall (Ronan 68).
Unused subs: Burgoyne, Gibbs-White, Hause.
Bookings: Douglas (72 – foul), Batth (75 – foul), Price (102 – foul), N’Diaye (102 – ungentlemanly conduct).
Rovers: Slocombe, Leadbitter (Partington 97), Lockyer (capt), Sercombe, Clarke, Harrison (Gaffney 90+2), Bodin, Nichols (Telford 85), Lines, Broadbent (Moore 105), Bola.
Unused subs: Smith, Brown, Sinclair.
Bookings: Harrison (58 – foul), Nichols (90+4 - foul).
Sending-Off: Lockyer (120 – professional foul).
Referee: T. Harrington.
Attendance: 12,740 (1,957 away supporters).