Wolves 2 (Jimenez 30, Dendoncker 59) Torino 1 (Belotti 58)
Wolves qualified for the main rounds of the Europa League for the first time since 1980 – when the competition was in its former UEFA Cup guise – with a 5-3 aggregate win over Torino.
Raul Jimenez’s first-half finish and Leander Dendoncker’s neat effort, which sandwiched an Andrea Belotti header, was enough for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side to reach the group stages of the 2019/20 version of Europe's secondary major competition.
Reverting to the team which started at the Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino in the first leg – with the only exception being Jonny in place of Ruben Vinagre – Wolves came out of the blocks fighting, putting the early pressure on the Torino defence.
But despite their strong start, it was the visitors who had the best chance of the opening stages with Belotti coming just inches away from connecting to a Daniele Baselli free-kick which had been flicked on to the Italian striker at the back post.
Minutes later, Wolves were awarded a free-kick of their own from a dangerous position when both Diogo Jota and Jimenez were taken down in the Torino half. Up stepped Romain Saiss from 25-yards, but the Moroccan’s effort hit the top of the wall and the ball was cleared.
Wolves were almost outdone by a clever Torino set-piece routine which landed perfectly to the feet of Tomas Rincon who attempted an audacious volley from the edge of the area, but fortunately for the hosts, his effort flashed wide of Patricio’s left upright.
Salvatore Sirigu was called into action mid-way through the first-half when Adama Traore turned of the afterburners to power through the Torino defence and into the penalty area before unleashing a powerful shot goalbound which the visiting keeper stood up well to, before the ball was hooked clear.
Traore’s trickery was the catalyst Wolves needed to extend their advantage in the tie when he set up Jimenez for the home side’s first of the evening, but a goal which put them 4-2 up on aggregate.
The speedy right-wing back, who had the Torino defence backing off, used a quick burst of pace to get to the byline before turning back and playing a cutting pass across the six-yard box for Jimenez to stick his boot out to and divert the ball into the bottom corner of the net, giving Sirigu no chance.
Rui Patricio had to be at his best to keep Wolves ahead on the night when former West Ham United striker Simone Zaza rose unmarked in the centre of the penalty area to head goalwards, but the Wolves keeper got down well to his left to smother the attempt.
Half-time: Wolves 1 Torino 0 (4-2 agg)
With Torino continuing to boss possession at Molineux, Wolves were catching their opponents on the break, and a marauding run by Jota won his side a free-kick. From the resulting free-kick, the ball founds its way to Jota on the edge of the box who flashed a pass directly across the Torino penalty area, but Sirigu was able to beat Jimenez to the ball.
It was the turn of the Wolves keeper to show his acrobatics moments later when Baselli curled a free-kick from a tight angle, just outside the area on the left, towards the far top corner of the net, but Patricio was able to use his long limbs to palm the ball away from goal and out for a corner.
Patricio could do nothing to stop the Italians from getting back level on the night when Belotti planted his head on a Baselli free-kick which was curled into the centre of the Wolves penalty area, leaving the Portuguese goalkeeper stranded.
However, Wolves didn’t let the goal disrupt them and extended their lead within 60 seconds of the restart. Doing well to win the ball back in the Torino midfield, Jota drove towards goal and saw his powerful shot well deflected away by Sirigu, but the ball fell to an onrushing Dendoncker who, 15 yards from goal, calmly slotted home off the inside of the post.
Jota, who scored an acrobatic overhead kick in the previous round against FC Pyunik at Molineux, attempted a similar with 20 minutes of the game remaining, but the ball was just nicked off his toe as he leapt into the air.
Torino were not too far away from their second of the evening when Zaza picked up the ball on the edge of the box before cutting onto his right and aiming a curled effort into the top corner, but it was deflected behind. Zaza then tried his own overhead kick inside the Wolves penalty area, but it flew wildly over the crossbar.
The hosts could have extended their lead with five minutes left on the clock when Dendoncker burst into the Torino box and forced Sirigu into a good save, but the ball fell substitute Patrick Cutrone who struggled to get his shot away. Fellow substitute Soualiho Meite then took a 25-yard shot towards Patricio’s goal, but it ended up going wide of the post.
As the game came to its conclusion, Wolves supporters were celebrating their side reaching their first Europa League group stages as well as the main round of the competition for the first time since 1981.
Full-time: Wolves 2 Torino 1 (5-3 agg)
Wolves: Patricio, Traore, Vallejo, Coady, Boly, Jonny, Saiss, Dendoncker, Moutinho (Neves 90), Jota (Cutrone 81), Jimenez (Neto 90).
Unused subs: Ruddy, Bennett, Vinagre, Gibbs-White.
Torino: Sirigu, Izzo, Bremer, Bonifazi, De Silvestri, Baselli, Rincon (Meite 72), Lukic, Aina (Berenguer 70), Zaza (Millico 81), Belotti.
Unused subs: Rosati, Singo, Parigini, Djidji.
Referee: Jesus Gil Manzano (Spain)