Wolves 2 (Dendoncker 38, Podence 58) Tottenham 2 (Ndombele 14, Kane 23)
Wolves exited the Carabao Cup on penalties after producing a stirring comeback during a thrilling cup tie with Tottenham Hotspur, but the old gold missed their final three spot kicks, which opened the door for the North London club to progress.
The initial 90 minutes had served up a thriller, which saw Wolves fight back from two goals down and create a sensational atmosphere at Molineux. That hadn’t looked likely in the first-half, which saw Tanguy Ndombele and Harry Kane put the visitors in the ascendancy.
However, Leander Dendoncker’s towering header changed the game and Daniel Podence’s second goal in this year’s Carabao Cup drew Wolves level. Both sides had chances to win it in normal time, with John Ruddy excellent in goal, but the goalkeeper’s solitary save in the shootout was in vain, as Spurs progressed.
Despite the excitement of Molineux under the lights, the contest started on a saddening note as Yerson Mosquera lasted just six minutes on his Wolves debut, before being stretched off, and it was Spurs who benefitted from the break in play, kicking into gear and taking the lead after Ndombele got the better of Willy Boly and Conor Coady, before composing himself to slot home.
Things got worse from there however for Wolves, who found themselves two down on 23 minutes. This time Dele Alli was allowed time in the midfield to slip a clever through ball between Boly and Maximilian Kilman to Kane, who calmly fired home, beyond John Ruddy.
However, it was game on closing in on half-time when Wolves reduced the arrears with a goal of a simplistic nature – Rayan Ait-Nouri’s corner was clean, as was Dendoncker’s header, which flew past Pierluigi Gollini and into the top corner – the Belgian’s first of the season which improved the atmosphere around Molineux considerably.
It could have got even better for the break too, as Hee Chan Hwang glanced over another impressive Ait-Nouri delivery, while Fabio Silva missed his kick when Ki-Jana Hoever squared for him – his final involvement, with Adama Traore taking his place at the break.
Half-time | Wolves 1-2 Spurs
Shooting towards the South Bank, Wolves backed themselves after the interval and Hwang once again came close, firing over at the near post. The hosts wouldn’t be denied however and once Hwang robbed Ndombele of possession, Dendoncker was away and the Belgian picked the perfect time to slip in Podence, who made no mistake firing past Gollini.
The atmosphere was electric by this point, and so was the action on the pitch, and only a sensational save by the feet of Ruddy stopped Giovani Lo Celso giving Tottenham the lead once again. The goalkeeper was in inspired mood and bettered himself somehow minutes later when keeping out Kane’s header at point-blank range.
With ten remaining, the contest could have gone either way, and Traore tried to swing the pendulum Wolves’ way, forcing Gollini to save at his near post, before a dipping, and deflected, Ruben Neves drilled bounced off the top of the crossbar.
However, the game was to be decided on penalties and after Hwang and Joao Moutinho scored, Neves cleared the crossbar and Dendoncker was denied by Gollini, meaning when Coady smashed the woodwork with the fifth kick, it was decisive, and Wolves were out.
Full-time | Wolves 2-2 Spurs (2-3 on pens)
Wolves | Ruddy, Hoever, Mosquera (Coady 9), Boly, Kilman, Ait-Nouri (Semedo 75), Neves, Dendoncker, Podence (Moutinho 84), Hwang, Silva (Traore 46).
Unused subs | Moulden, Trincao, Jimenez.
Spurs | Gollini, Tanganga (Reguilon 90), Romero, Sanchez, Davies, Skipp, Ndombele, Lo Celso (Son 61), Dele (Hojbjerg 82), Gil, Kane.
Unused subs | Austin, Doherty, Rodon, Scarlett.