Wolves 0 Liverpool 1 (Origi 90)
Having defended excellently for more than 90 minutes, Wolves fell to a late Liverpool hammer blow as Divock Origi’s goal stole all three points at Molineux.
Wolves looked to have made it three consecutive goalless draws as they hung on well against the side pushing towards the top of the Premier League table, but their rear guard resistance was finally broken for the first time in four matches.
Bringing Ruben Neves into the starting line-up for Joao Moutinho after serving his one-game suspension against Burnley in mid-week, Bruno Lage’s men got off to a positive start at Molineux against title-chasing Liverpool.
Raul Jimenez and Adama Traore were creating problems for the Liverpool defence, without truly testing Alisson in the reds’ goal, while birthday boy Diogo Jota – back on his old stomping ground – was the biggest threat from the visitors, heading an effort wide from a good position.
But having kept three clean sheets in succession, the Wolves defence were continuing their form in the early stages, with Romain Saiss, Maximilian Kilman and Conor Coady – who took a big hit in defending a dangerous Andrew Robertson cross – putting their bodies on the line to deny the aforementioned Jota, Mo Salah and Sadio Mane from getting a sniff, while Jose Sa was commanding as ever in his penalty area, claiming cross after cross to launch several counter-attacks for his side.
It was on the counter where Wolves looked to be the most threatening, using the pace of Traore and Hee Chan Hwang and the skilful feet of Jimenez, who saw an effort from the edge of the box fly high into the North Bank.
Liverpool grew into the contest and could have taken the lead through England right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold who was played into space over the head of Rayan Ait-Nouri, but his volleyed effort missed high over Sa’s crossbar.
Wolves’ best chance of the opening half fell the way of Ait-Nouri. The wing-back, who was dealing well with the threat of the in-form Salah, was found on the overlap by Hwang, and having used his tricky feet to get round Alexander-Arnold by the goalline, he cut inside onto his unfavoured right foot, and although there was space between him and the goal, he could not get his shot-come-cross on target.
Half-time | Wolves 0-0 Liverpool
Liverpool were the more dominant threat in the second period, and should have opened the scoring on 50 minutes when a high cross into the penalty area by Salah fell to the feet of Thiago, but his initial effort was blocked by Jimenez, before the rebound was cleared away by the boot of Sa.
The defence of the hosts continued to be outstanding throughout the afternoon, with Coady making an incredible block to deny Jota who had got the ball after a mix-up between Saiss and Sa, but with the keeper out of goal, the former Wolves striker had the whole goal to aim at, but Coady stook strong to painfully block his effort.
Wolves’ biggest threat was from the counter-attack or shots from long-range, with Dendoncker trying his luck after catching Liverpool unaware, but his 40 yard effort was never troubling Alisson, who had come off his line.
Liverpool were penning Wolves into their own half as the game wore on, but the hosts were limiting the Reds to pot shots from distance, as Salah and Origi firing high and wide, but with the game reaching its conclusion the visitors grabbed the late winner.
Salah found Origi inside the penalty area, and having turned towards goal, with just Sa to beat, the Liverpool man hit a low shot which the keeper was unable to stop hitting the back of his net, as the Reds snatched all three points.
Full-time | Wolves 0-1 Liverpool
Wolves | Sa, Semedo, Kilman, Coady, Saiss, Ait-Nouri (Hoever 90), Neves, Dendoncker, Traore (Trincao 88), Hwang, Jimenez.
Unused subs | Ruddy, Bueno, Moutinho, Cundle, Podence, Campbell, Silva.
Liverpool | Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, van Dijk, Matip, Robertson, Thiago, Henderson (Origi 68), Fabinho, Mane, Jota (Oxlade-Chamberlain 82), Salah (Milner 90).
Unused subs | Kelleher, Konate, Minamino, Tsimikas, Phillips, Williams.
Referee | Chris Kavanagh