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Brighton 0 Wolves 0 – Report


The Seagulls enjoyed the better chances early on but were struggling for that killer touch, as Wolves looked for counter attacking opportunities.

Matheus Cunha had a big chance in the opening seconds of the second half but his composure from close range let him down, as neither side found their shooting boots.

In the end, both teams settled for a point, with Wolves now turning their attentions to the FA Cup Black Country derby.

Analysis

Gary O’Neil made three changes from the team that beat Brentford in the FA Cup and stuck with the 5-2-3 formation.

Pedro Neto came in for his first start since October 28, while Mario Lemina made his first start since leaving on compassionate leave just before the New Year.

Craig Dawson also returned to the team, while Santi Bueno, Joe Hodge and Jean-Ricner Bellegarde dropped to the bench.

Brighton started the brighter of the two sides and almost took the lead when a corner was flicked on by Danny Welbeck and Facundo Buonanotte met it at the far post, but Tommy Doyle cleared off the line.

Max Kilman (Getty)

The hosts were just missing that final pass to create a big opportunity and that was even more evident when they broke with four on three, but James Milner’s poor cross was blocked by Dawson.

Then, racing up the other end, Neto had a left-footed shot from distance flash beyond the post.

Joao Pedro took aim for the Seagulls but Jose Sa got down to meet it easily.

Most of the action was coming off the field or off the ball, with Neil Cutler getting into a war of words with Roberto De Zerbi and receiving a booking, while an ongoing battle between Cunha and Billy Gilmour saw the former eventually pick up a yellow card.

As the teams entered half-time drawing 0-0, Cunha was furious with his booking and had to be held back from the officials by his team-mates.

Within seconds of the game restarting, Wolves should have taken the lead. Neto raced forward and found Cunha, who had his first shot saved and then blazed his rebound over the bar from close range.

A lovely Brighton move then put Welbeck through on goal but a magnificent recovery tackle from Nelson Semedo saved Wolves.

Pedro Neto (Getty)

Moments later, Max Kilman slid in to deny a cross but turned the ball against his own post, as Wolves defended with their backs against the wall.

Wolves were still dangerous on the counter attack, however, and Neto’s low cross was aimed for Cunha but turned behind by Jason Steele.

In a fairly quiet second half, Semedo then played a delightful ball to Neto and his low cross was begging for a touch at the back post, but no-one met it. Cunha had made an initial run but then stopped when he would have had a tap-in.

Moments later Neto found Cunha, who rounded the outrushing Steele, but tried an ambitious shot near the corner flag which was well wide.

With Wolves getting chances, Cunha played in Lemina and his shot forced a good save out of Steele.

After 87 minutes, Tawanda Chirewa came on for his Premier League debut and replaced Neto.

In the end, Wolves took a point back to the Black Country with a huge derby game to focus on this weekend.

Teams

Wolves: Sa, Semedo, Kilman, Dawson, Toti, Doherty, Lemina, Doyle, Sarabia (Bellegarde, 68), Cunha, Neto (Chirewa, 87).

Subs not used: Bentley, S.Bueno, Mosquera, H.Bueno, Hodge, Griffiths, Fraser.

Brighton: Steele, Hinshelwood (Baker-Boaitey, 91), Dunk, van Hecke, Estupinan (Lallana, 71), Milner (Webster, 71), Gross, Gilmour, Buonanotte (Lamptey, 64), Pedro, Welbeck (Ferguson, 64).

Subs not used: Verbruggen, Moder, Baleba, Peupion.



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