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HULL CITY: Wolves show added ‘bite’ against Tigers
Hull City 2, Wolverhampton Wanderers 3
One of the Championship’s most fancied sides had recorded an unbeaten start to the season as they travelled to take on Hull City. Sports presenter Simon Bromwich was at the KCom to report for Beverley FM . . .
Hull City seemed to be off to a bright start against the unbeaten force of Wolves and expectations were high. But then, just five minutes into the game, record signing Ruben Neves gave City and their fans a rude awakening , striking a fantastic shot from 20 yards beyond the reach of a helpless Allan McGregor.
The 20-year-old moved from FC Porto, where he’d played under current Wolves boss Jorge Mendes, for a Championship record fee of £15.8 million last month and he was looking every inch the star man.
The first half certainly looked to be going the way of Wolves way until a duo of corners caused them problems . . .
First, Grosicki’s cross had a flicked header on to the post by Hector, which was cleared for another corner. That corner was taken short and quickly, and this time Grosicki’s cross came even closer, cleared off the line but headed home by City captain Michael Dawson.
We were level and back in the game but then heartbreak again. Just before the break, young Nigerian forward Bright Enobakhare, who’d played just 14 times for the club in the previous two seasons, turned on some magic, weaving through the City back line before putting a low cross across the face of goal to be tapped home by former Athletico Madrid midfielder Diogo Jota at the far post.
Overall, the first half was mainly dominated by the Wolverhampton midfield pairing of Neves and Morocco’s French-born international Romain Saiss, who used their wingers to stretch the inexperienced City full backs.
After the break it looked a slower affair, with City looking to attack more, but leaving gaps in the defence.
Both sides picked up needless bookings with late challenges and dissent as tempers were raised. The best chance early in the second half fell to Fraiser Campbell, who picked the pockets of a dithering central defence before firing his one on one chance at the shins of Ruddy in goal.
A worrying-looking injury to striker Abel Hernandez saw him stretchered off in the 80th minute; minutes after his header cannoned off the post from a Clucas corner.
In the final minute of time Aina lost possession on half-way, allowing former Monaco player Ivan Calaveiro to thread a perfectly timed through ball to Noah Dicko. The Mali international calmly slotted home beneath the on-rushing McGregor in the City goal.
The Tigers did manage to pull back a consolation in the 8th minute of injury time, after Max Clark was shoved while challenging for a cross. David Meyler dispatched the penalty.
Wolves looked the better organised side who now have won three from three and look to be a Championship force. With the honeymoon-period over, City will need to build their squad rapidly before the impending closing of the transfer window.
Hull City (Dawson 27, Meyler 98).
Wolverhampton Wanderers (Neves 5, Jota 42, Dicko 89)
Player ratings, Hull City: McGregor 7; Aina 5, Dawson 7, Hector 6, Clark 6; Henriksen 5, Clucas 7; Bowen 6 (Larsson 60′ 6), Campbell 6 (Diomande 75′ 5), Grosicki 5; Hernandez 5 (Meyler 84′ 6). Subs: Mannion (GK), Mazuch, Weir, Lenihan.