Everton 3 (Richarlison 5 & 80, Iwobi 12) Wolves 2 (Saiss 9, Jimenez 75)
Wolves were on the losing end of a crazy five-goal dual with Everton at Goodison Park, as Romain Saiss and Raul Jimenez netted without reward. The pair’s goals twice pulled Nuno Espirito Santo’s side level, but on both occasions the hosts recovered quickly and Richarlison’s late header provided a bridge too far.
It was the Brazilian who’d opened the scoring on just five minutes, capaitalising on a defence error by Wolves, before Adama Traore expertly set up Saiss to convert his first goal of the season. However, the Toffees went in for the break ahead thanks to Alex Iwobi’s header.
A close-range header by Jimenez looked to have earned Wolves a deserved share of the spoils from a Ryan Bennett long thrown, however the hosts won it late when Richarlison rose highest and watched his towered header fly beyond Rui Patricio.
On a sunny afternoon in Merseyside, the first chance of the contest fell to the hosts, but Patricio was happy to watch Gylfi Sigurdsson’s header sail over the bar. However, it wasn’t long after he was picking the ball out of the back of the net. A mix up between Conor Coady and the goalkeeper saw the ball fall invitingly for Richarlison, who fired into the ground and over the Wolves captain on the line.
However, the hosts were given only four minutes to savour that lead, with Wolves levelling before the opening ten minutes were out. It was a goal which owed much to the in-form Traore, who beat Lucas Digne all ends up and put the ball into an area Everton couldn’t handle, allowing Saiss to steam in and tuck home the equaliser.
Unbelievably though, with the third chance of the contest, Everton retook the lead. Sigurdsson found space down the right and picked out Iwobi at the back post, and his header was too powerful for Patricio to keep out, despite his touch.
The chance to goal ratio did slow eventually, but only for a brilliant piece of goalkeeping by Jordan Pickford. Jimenez fizzed a cross in which Cutrone looked to have steered into the top corner, but the stopper stretched to keep his side in front.
Naturally, after the drama of the opening stages, the contest hit a lull after that point, but still Cutrone, on his first Premier League start, had a powerful strike blocked behind for a corner, while Yerry Mina headed a Sigurdsson corner straight at Patricio for the hosts.
Half-time: Everton 2 Wolves 1
After the interval, the open contest continued and Moise Keane headed over for the Toffees. As for Wolves, then introduced Joao Moutinho to the action not long after the break, in place of Saiss, before Jota took the place of Cutrone.
As the half wore on with little action to report, Wolves grew into the game and eventually got their second equaliser with 15 minutes to go. Bennett’s long throw was flicked on by Willy Boly and Jimenez bravely nodded in at the back post, under pressure from Digne.
However, just the quick-fire nature of the goals reared its ugly head again from a Wolves perspective, as Digne’s deep cross was met by a leaping Richarlison, who got ahead of Boly and powered a header out of Patricio’s reach.
The Brazilian was on a hat-trick and his curling effort minutes later looked destined for the top corner, only for Patricio to beat the ball away. The goalkeeper was determined to keep his side in the contest with time running out and produced a fine one-handed save to deny Mina soon after.
His efforts went without rewarded however and Wolves couldn’t fine a third and final equaliser, instead their mood was worsened as Boly picked up a second yellow card and was dismissed in injury time.
Full-time: Everton 3 Wolves 2
Everton: Pickford, Coleman, W Keane, Mina, Digne, Gomes, Delph, Richarlison, Sigurdsson, Iwobi (Bernard 76), M Keane (Calvert-Lewin 76).
Unused subs: Stekelenburg, Sidibe, Holgate, Schneiderlin, Tosun.
Wolves: Patricio, Traore, Bennett, Coady, Boly, Vinagre, Neves (Neto 84), Saiss (Moutinho 59), Dendoncker, Cutrone (Jota 68), Jimenez.
Unused subs: Ruddy, Vallejo, Jonny, Gibbs-White.