Crystal Palace 1 (Eze 60) Wolves 0
Eberechi Eze scored the only goal of the game as Wolves lost out to Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park. After an uneventful first-half, both sides improved after the break, but it was the Eagles who made one of their chances count, as Eze fired in from the edge of the box.
Full debutant Willian Jose was twice denied by Vicente Guaita in the Palace goal, once with a powerful strike which needed tipping over, and then with a downward header header from Pedro Neto’s corner, but on both occasions the goalkeeper frustrated Nuno Espirito Santo’s side.
Back in London for the second time in four days, Wolves were aiming to build on that point against Palace, but were relieved to see Nathaniel Clyne’s early sighter fly over the bar.
That early Clyne effort was a rarity, with chances few and far between throughout a tight first-half, which saw Wolves marshal Palace’s attacking threat, while looking to break, and from one of their flurries forward, Leander Dendoncker found himself in a fantastic position, meeting Jose’s flick, but the Belgian couldn’t trap the ball and the opportunity quickly vanished.
Palace’s biggest chance arrived on 42 minutes when Patrick van Aanholt got in behind Ki-Jana Hoever and squared for Clyne, whose powerful effort bounced into the path of Michy Batshuayi, but the striker couldn’t keep his effort down, unaware that the offside flag was up anyway.
Half-time | Crystal Palace 0-0 Wolves
The game needed a lift and Wolves almost provided it five minutes into the second-half. Dendoncker worked the ball wide to Podence, who squared for full debutant Jose, who wrapped his foot around the ball and struck a powerful effort goalwards which Guaita needed to turn over the bar.
However, as Wolves began to grow into the contest, they were caught at the other end as Clyne and Jordan Ayew combined to set up Eze, whose dummy threw Dendoncker and allowed the youngster to fizz a low effort underneath Rui Patricio and into the Wolves net.
It almost got worse for the visitors ten minutes later. From Wolves’ own corner, the Eagles broke with Batshuayi and Wilfried Zaha, and once the latter cut past Conor Coady and onto his left foot, he smashed his effort against the woodwork – huge let off for Wolves.
And the visitors almost made the most of it soon after as Jose rose highest to meet Neto’s corner and directed his header on goal, but Guaita got down low to save with his knee and the Spaniard was at it again soon after to keep out Nelson Semedo’s near-post effort, ensuring it was Palace who claimed the points.
Full-time | Crystal Palace 1-0 Wolves
Palace | Guaita, Clyne (Ward 84), Dann, Kouyate, van Aanholt, Eze, McCarthy (Riedewald 46), Milivojevic, Zaha, Batshuayi (Townsend 80), Ayew.
Unused subs | Butland, Mitchell, Kelly, Cahill, Mateta, Benteke.
Wolves | Patricio, Hoever (Traore 62), Boly, Coady, Kilman, Semedo, Moutinho (Silva 78), Dendoncker, Podence (Vitinha 68), Neto, Jose.
Unused subs | Ruddy, Lonwijk, Bueno, Otasowie, Neves, Gibbs-White.