Report | Wolves 0-3 Man City

Wolves 0 Man City 3 (Grealish 1, Haaland 16, Foden 69)

The reigning Premier League champions showed their quality at Molineux on Saturday afternoon, as Wolves were beaten 3-0 by Manchester City, having played more than half of the match with 10 men. The visitors were already two goals to the good by the time Nathan Collins received a straight red card, and after the break City’s win became comfortable.

Both Jack Grealish and Erling Haaland struck in the opening 20 minutes, but Wolves remained a threat at times, until Collins’ red for a high challenge on Grealish made their tough task even more difficult. Wolves kept asking questions of their visitors after the interval, but it was Phil Foden who stroked home the third to make City’s win that bit more routine.

Before kick-off, Molineux impeccably paid tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, with a minute’s silence followed by a live performance of the National Anthem, sang impressively by Samantha Oxborough. Once the tributes were complete, the attention turned to the football, but it was the champions who put themselves in the ascendency in the opening minutes.

With the first attack of the game, Foden shaped up Rayan Ait-Nouri and slipped in Kevin De Bruyne, who whipped a trademark ball across the face of goal, and while Haaland couldn’t reach it, Grealish was steaming in on the blind side of Jonny to fire home from close range.

That early setback wasn’t part of the Wolves script, but they kept to their principles, and almost had an equaliser as quickly as City bagged the opener when Matheus Nunes stretched his legs down the right, fed it infield for Daniel Podence, who in turn found Goncalo Guedes, and his near-post drive needed palming away by Ederson.

However, it was City in possession of Europe’s most in-form striker, so it was little surprise when Haaland found the net for the seventh successive match. When he picked the ball up midway through the Wolves half from Bernardo Silva, he carried it forward and fired early towards the near post, maybe catching Jose Sa unsighted, as it flew into the corner.

Wolves were still creating half chances, with both Pedro Neto and Podence shooting wide of Ederson’s goal, but it was the incident between those efforts which killed the contest completely. Collins’ challenge on Grealish was high and out of control, so as his boot planted into the City man, referee Anthony Taylor produced the red card to reduce the home numbers by one.

Half-time | Wolves 0 Man City 2

Anyone expecting Wolves to simply give up at this point, however, were mistaken – Bruno Lage’s side kept going to their credit. After threatening the City backline previously, a flurry down the left through Ait-Nouri created a Wolves opening, but Guedes couldn’t get the desired connection on his side-footed effort.

At the other end, City always remained a threat, and from a similar opening to the goal, Haaland’s curling effort was parried by Sa, before Foden shot over with the rebound. However, their third goal did arrive when Haaland played in De Bruyne, whose cross was delicately flicked home by Foden.

From that point, Lage used the minutes to hand Boubacar Traore a debut off the bench, likewise a first Molineux bow for Chem Campbell, as City comfortably saw out their victory and left Wolves moving into the international period on the back of a defeat.

Full-time | Wolves 0-3 Man City

Wolves | Sa, Jonny, Collins, Kilman, Ait-Nouri (Semedo 81), Neves, Moutinho, Nunes, Neto (Campbell 86), Podence (B. Traore 70), Guedes (Hwang 70).

Unused subs | Sarkic, Bueno, Mosquera, Toti, Ronan.

Man City | Ederson Stones, Akanji, Dias, Cancelo, Rodri (Gomez 81), Silva (Alvarez 72), De Bruyne (Gundogan 72), Grealish (Palmer 77), Foden (Mahrez 72), Haaland.

Unused subs | Stefan, Carson, Walker, Ake.