Wolves 1-1 Man Utd: Report, Ratings & Reaction as Paul Pogba Misses Penalty in Entertaining Draw

Manchester United had to settle for a draw after being pegged by Wolves on Monday night, a Ruben Neves stunner equalising for the hosts after Anthony Martial had given the Red Devils an early lead, with Rui Patricio also saving Paul Pogba’s second half penalty.

The game started slowly, with United dominating the early possession. However, the first chance came after 20 minutes, as Marcus Rashford created space for himself on the left, before picking out an unmarked Martial, who couldn’t make a solid connection.

He made no mistake next time round, however. On 27 minutes, Rashford slid through Martial, who fired into the roof of the net. United dominated the rest of the half, with the Wolves players beginning to show their frustration. 

Wanderers came out flying in the second half, and it didn’t take them long to get the stadium rocking. First, a glorious Raul Jimenez header hit the post, and then Neves scored a typically sensational goal from the edge of the area – a right footed curler that left David de Gea with no chance.

In a frantic second half, United were awarded a penalty, which Paul Pogba won and took. However, Patricio produced a magnificent save to keep the scores level. The game became an end-to-end affair, with United having the better chances, but they were unable to find a winner.


WOLVES

Key Talking Point

Nuno Espirito Santo had the luxury of resting the majority of his first team for their fixture against Pyunik on Thursday, and as expected the star names returned on Monday night. However, they were unable to get into their normal fluid rhythm in the first half.

The most concerning thing as far as ​Wolves fans are concerned is that their usually reliable defence looked shaky and penetrable. Willy Boly misjudged the flight of the ball early on, giving Martial a glorious chance to give United the lead. However, it was the lack of communication between Conor Coady and Ryan Bennett only ten minutes later that let the Frenchman in once again – this time, he made it count. 

The defensive woes continued, as Matt Doherty was forced off at half-time through injury. The struggles at the back meant the ball was constantly being recycled by the Red Devils, and Wolves’ midfield weren’t able to dictate the tempo of the game. However, a blistering start to the second half saw them draw level within a matter of moments. The resilience of Nuno’s men was put to the test, but they once again passed the test with a strong second half showing.


Player Ratings

Starting XI: Patricio (7); Bennett (5), Coady (5), Boly (6); Doherty (4), Dendoncker (7*), Neves (7), Joao Moutinho (6), Jonny (6); Jimenez (6), Jota (5).

Substitutes: Traore (7), Pedro Neto (6), Cutrone (N/A).


STAR MAN – It was a truly outrageous goal from Neves, but it was Leander Dendoncker who put in a strong showing in midfield. His work often goes unnoticed, but his tireless work ethic and pressing was crucial to keeping Wolves in the match in the first half. He was fundamental in restricting United to just a handful of chances, despite them dominating the opening 45. 

As Nuno’s men made a strong start to the second half, Dendoncker kept the team ticking over and gave the forwards a chance to become more of a presence. His link-up play with substitute Adama Traore was also impressive, the Spaniard posing a threat up and down the right wing. At £12m, Dendoncker has proven to be a very shrewd piece of business. 


MANCHESTER UNITED

Key Talking Point

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer made the bold decision to name a very attacking starting lineup, dropping Andreas Pereira and replacing him with Daniel James. The 21-year-old was quiet in the opening exchanges, and struggled to really get into the game. However, his defensive work was highly impressive, helping nullify any Wolves attacks.

The Red Devils were faced with a different prospect to the Chelsea test, as they were tasked with taking the game to Wolves in the first half. The players looked lively, with Rashford and Martial putting in strong showings.

However, Solskjaer’s men struggled to deal with the early pressure in the second half. The defence looked rattled and it appeared as though Wolves would capitalise and continue their fine run against United. However, fans can take heart from the resilience shown to dig in as United began to assert themselves again – until Pogba missed the penalty.

Rashford comfortably dispatched his spot kick against Chelsea and there was some social media reaction to Pogba taking responsibility instead. However, although they weren’t able to claim a win, it was another indicator of a young ​United side coming of age. 


Player Ratings

Starting XI: De Gea (6); Wan-Bissaka (6), Lindelof (6), Maguire (6), Shaw (6); McTominay (6), Pogba (4); James (6), Lingard (5), Rashford (7); Martial (8*).

Substitutes: Mata (6), Pereira (N/A), Greenwood (N/A).


STAR MAN – Martial was unable to get involved in the opening exchanges, but the Frenchman took his chance when it came. It was a ruthless and top class finish from a man who had barely touched the ball up until that point. It was a true number nine’s goal.

From that moment, his whole game improved and he caused the three Wolves defenders numerous problems. His link-up play with Rashford and Lingard would have been a pleasing sight for Solskjaer and the coaching staff, as he continues to repay the faith showed in him by the manager.

Martial’s tendency to fade in and out of games has been a major worry for United, but he’s proving to be more consistent and as a result, much more of a threat in matches. 


Looking Ahead

Wolves will travel to face Torino on Thursday in the first leg of their play-off Europa League tie. They will then come back and play host to Burnley on Sunday. 

United, meanwhile, host Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday, before travelling to face Southampton the following Saturday. 

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Mohamed Salah Speaks Out On Disagreements With Egyptian FA as Retirement Rumours Persist

​Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah has discussed the multiple disputes he has had with the Egyptian FA in recent times, with the 27-year-old also confirming his desire to keep playing for the African nation.

Rumours have circulated that the Champions League winner would retire from international duty following a number of disagreements with his country’s governing body.

Salah accused them of being in ‘competition’ with him at this summer’s Africa Cup of Nations, taking particular issue with a lack of security and Egypt’s disregard for the concerns he raised during the tournament.

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Asked whether his fractured relationship with the EFA could see him hang up his boots early, the Anfield star told ​CNN: “I love this country from my heart. It’s always in my mind.

“Something pushed me forward to perform, to be iconic for the kids – to be like a dream for the kids to one day be like me. I want to be that person, so to just retire from the national team is huge for me.

I think with the federation, it was a bit like a competition,” Salah continued, addressing his frustrations from AFCON 2019. “Who’s the winner? I will never be a winner because I’m a player.

“When I come to tell you something, you have to know that I’m telling you just because I want to be happy. It’s not because I’m showing you that I’m powerful. I’m not powerful there. Believe me, [I was], I could have changed a lot of things.

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The ​Liverpool winger was unable to prevent Egypt’s last 16 exit at the hands of South Africa, with EFA president Hany Abo Rida resigning in the wake of the disappointment.

Discussing who should replace the 66-year-old, Salah stated: “The one who is coming now needs to be honest with himself and try to fix the things, because [the players] are not happy about a lot of things. Hopefully the new one comes and does things differently.”

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Liverpool Coach Confirms Club Have Discussed Signing Former Tottenham Star Michel Vorm

​Liverpool could offer Michel Vorm a deal at Anfield after the Dutchman’s contract with Tottenham Hotspur expired in the summer.

That’s according to Reds goalkeeping coach John Achterberg, who has revealed the club are considering several alternatives in the absence of first choice shot-stopper Alisson. 

The Brazilian limped off during the team’s 4-1 opening night victory over Norwich City on 9 August, with Adrian currently deputising for the 26-year-old.

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Jurgen Klopp’s recruits were able to see off ​Southampton with the Spaniard in goal, efforts from Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino ensuring Adrian’s late blunder would have no effect on the result.

Journeyman keeper Andy Lonergan was brought in as cover over the summer, but Achterberg has refused to rule out a move for Vorm. Speaking to ​NOS, the coach stated: “The arrival of Vorm has been discussed.”

However, he also suggested that ​Liverpool are content with their options, adding: “I have always said that a good third goalie at a top club is not a superfluous luxury. Lonergan has more than 250 matches at Championship level – that is not to be underestimated.”

Michel Vorm

Adrian came in for heavy criticism in the aftermath of the Reds’ 2-1 win away to the Saints on Saturday. The ex-​West Ham United man handed their opponents a late lifeline when he inexplicably hit an attempted pass directly at Danny Ings, the ball then ricocheting into an unguarded net.

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Marcelo Claims Real Madrid Do Not Need Any More Summer Signings

​Real Madrid don’t need to make any more signings ahead of the 2019/20 season, according to Los Blancos defender Marcelo.

After a nightmare showing last term, the Spanish giants unleashed an enormous £300m war-chest over the summer in a bid to revitalise their ailing squad. 

Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic, Eder Militao, Ferland Mendy and Rodrygo were all acquired during the off-season, with the latter – the cheapest of the quintet – arriving for £40m.

Eden Hazard

Hazard was the most expensive purchase, having been brought in from ​Chelsea for a fee that could potentially rise to £130m, though reports continue to circulate that ​Real are preparing a ​late move for Paul Pogba.

Asked by German news outlet ​Bild whether Madrid need the services of the Frenchman or any other players, Marcelo replied: “No, we have a good team.

It’ll be difficult, but if we each focus on our tasks then we can win everything. I have been taught to compete for all titles ever since I joined Real Madrid. It won’t be any different this year and we’ll fight for the league, the ​Champions League and the Copa del Rey.”

The left back also took the opportunity to discuss the challenges he faced last season after Los Blancos crashed out of Europe at the last 16 stage courtesy of a harrowing 4-1 home defeat to Ajax.

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That exit – combined with a semi final loss to ​Barcelona in the cup and a third place finish in ​La Liga – saw supporters turn on the coaching staff and players, with Marcelo receiving heavy abuse for his performances.

I have learned to live with criticism and to carry on doing my thing,” the 31-year-old explained. “I know better than anybody else when I’m doing good or when I’m doing bad. The criticism doesn’t bother me.”

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90min’s Definitive European Player Power Rankings: Week 2

So you’re here. Week two of 90min’s DEFINITIVE European Player Rankings. You ready? Inhale. Exhale. Now get ready for the drama.

That was an irrelevant (somewhat altered) reference to Camron’s ice-cold classic ‘Killa Cam’ if you were unaware, but that’s the kind of mood we’re in this Monday. We’re ready.

Last week saw ‘The Wire‘ Season Four take centre stage for Raheem Sterling’s coronation atop the Player Power Rankings, but that was when there were just three European Leagues up and running, only two of which could be considered ‘top’. That was Child’s Play. Now, with the return of La Liga and the Bundesliga, it’s getting real. Really real. It’s getting, like, esoteric.

Because football is back, sure, but did it ever really leave? Or is time a flat circle and everything that has happened will happen again and again, one way or another?

If you hadn’t guessed already, it’s ‘True Detective’ Season One time. Get that six-pack of Lone Star out. We’re traversing infernal planes here.


15. James Maddison (New Entry)

James Maddison

“Is sh*tting on any moment of decency part of your job description?”

All Leicester had to do on Sunday was roll over and let the Frank Lampard festivities take their rightful place in the limelight of this captivating affair. And, to be fair, they seemed content to do that, at least in the first half.

But then James Maddison emerged in the second half with renewed vigour and spirit, and he sh*t on that decency with a showing of pure playmaking class. Shame on him.


14. Mason Mount (New Entry)

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“I don’t sleep. I just dream.”

Mason Mount may be a dreamer – you have to be, if your goal is to break through the Chelsea academy’s thinly veiled glass ceiling – but he’s a realist when it comes to the work required.

And it was his work rate, combined with that oh-so composed finish (that had more than a few echoes of his boss), that impressed the Stamford Bridge faithful on Sunday. So yes, it was a dream debut, but it was founded in cold-hard discipline and hard-wrought talent. No time for sleep though, that’s for sure.


13. Erik Lamela (New Entry)

Rodrigo,Erik Lamela

“Yeah, and we ain’t gonna get ’em all. That ain’t what kind of world it is. But we got ours.”

Winning at the Etihad is a near fallacy. It is, if not impossible, then highly improbable. With that in mind, Spurs were never likely to take all three points. But a draw, well, a draw is great. And a draw is what they got, thanks in no small part to the talents of Erik Lamela, who scored Tottenham’s first and assisted their second.

Stellar stuff from the Argentine. You might say… Interstellar? A nice Matthew McConaughey extended universe joke, there. But how does that affect the Rustin Cohle extended universe? Ah sheeeet. Back to the storage unit we go.


12. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Up 2)

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

“I know who I am. And after all these years, there’s a victory in that.”

Sure, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang may frustrate a few people now and again with an errant miss, but he’s also a goalscorer, and by God (Rust would not approve of this phrasing) does he know it. 

Two games, two goals, up two places in the European Player Power Rankings. It’s all gravy for Pierre at the minute.


11. Moussa Dembele (New Entry)

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“I’m not supposed to be here.”

Moussa Dembele scored two goals in Lyon’s 6-0 drubbing of Angers SCO. They were both expertly taken, unapologetic finishes of the calibre that, well, maybe don’t befit Ligue 1. 

To be fair though, with form like this, they won’t be befitting Ligue 1 for much longer. 


10. Joao Felix (New Entry)

Joao Felix,Bruno

“I think the honourable thing for our species to do is deny our programming. Stop reproducing. Walk hand in hand into extinction, one last midnight. Brothers and sisters opting out of a raw deal.”

This is likely what every Getafe player was thinking as Joao Felix sliced through the entire side with THAT incomprehensibly skilful run. But, instead of giving up altogether, they just fouled the kid, giving away a penalty that, surprise, surprise, Alvaro Morata missed.


9. Ashley Barnes (Down 3)

Ashley Barnes

“You’re trapped, by that nightmare you keep waking up into.”

This is Ashley Barnes’ world. We’re just living in it. 


8. Sadio Mane (New Entry)

Sadio Mane,Trent Alexander-Arnold,Mohamed Salah

“I’m through talking to you like a man.”

Sadio Mane was sick of seeing Liverpool pinned back. Sick of seeing Southampton treated like they were the better team. So he did something about it. And that ‘something’ happened to be a – you love to see it? – Philippe Coutinho-esque bending strike that rifled the top corner. 


7. Memphis Depay (New Entry)

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“People out here, it’s like they don’t even know the outside world exists. Might as well be living on the f*cking moon.”

You know what I said about Moussa Dembele? Well, yeah, the same thing applies for Memphis Depay, except it’s arguably even more relevant, cause Memphis Depay has fire assists to go with his braces, and you best believe I’m not talking about the clothing or orthodontal kind.


6. Teemu Pukki (New Entry)

Teemu Pukki

“Life’s barely long enough to get good at one thing. So be careful what you get good at.”

Aware that one skill is a precious commodity, Teemu Pukki has trained all his life – except when he’s in Scotland, apparently – to just score goals. And, judging by that wondrous hat-trick against Newcastle, and the place atop the top scorers list it has given him, it’s paid off in the Premier League. 


5. Eduardo Camavinga (New Entry)

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“Once there was only dark. If you ask me, the light’s winning.”

Spoiler alert – only one of the players in this picture is present in these here rankings, and that’s the 16-year-old on the right, not the has-been on the left. Assuming Nuno Tavares’ position as the week’s incredible youngster, Eduardo Camavinga had some sizeable shoes to fill. 

But by God (got to stop doing that, ‘Transference of fear and self-loathing to an authoritarian vessel’ and all that) did Camavinga do so, singlehandedly marshalling his experienced counterparts out of the game with an unforgettable performance. Sure, it’s easy for a young forward to pop up and get a goal, but controlling a game when you can’t even drive?

That’s different.


4. Raheem Sterling (Down 3)

Raheem Sterling

“This is a world where nothing is solved. You know, someone once told me time is a flat circle. Everything we’ve ever done or will do, we’re gonna do over and over and over again.”

Manchester City’s draw against Tottenham proved that the universe really is a flat circle twice over on Saturday. Firstly, it showed that, yes, Raheem Sterling is just gonna score again and again and again until eternity. Hell, he’ll even score some with his head. 

And, secondly, with those VARian interventions, it also showed that, when it comes to hosting Spurs, the video assistant will never not be far away from dashing the Citizens’ last-gasp dreams. Never.


3. Jadon Sancho (New Entry)

Jadon Sancho,Marco Richter

“I think human consciousness is a tragic misstep in evolution.”

Jadon Sancho has no conscience. He has no guilt. No moral quandaries. He is ruthless in setting upon his goal, and that goal is to, err, set up and score goals. And he does it ALL. THE. TIME.

I mean sure, he’s conscious of the opposition, where they are on the pitch, how he can beat them, where his teammates are on the pitch, when he should pass to them etc etc etc. 

But that’s just semantics. 


2. Kevin De Bruyne (New Entry)

Kevin De Bruyne

“My ascension removes me from the disc and the loop. I’m near final stage. Some mornings, I can see the infernal plane.”

Sometimes Kevin De Bruyne can ascend the normalities of football. Sometimes he nears the precipice of that oh-so coveted ‘final stage’. Hell, sometimes he can clearly visualise the ‘infernal plane’, for Christ’s sake. 

The man is mythic, for sure, but those exceptional assists were both grounded in reality, implausible swaz and all. 


1. Aritz Aduriz (New Entry)

Aritz Aduriz

“To realise that all your life–you know, all your love, all your hate, all your memories, all your pain–it was all the same thing. It was all the same dream, a dream that you had inside a locked room, a dream about being a person. And like a lot of dreams, there’s a monster at the end of it.”

Not only did Barcelona find out that their La Liga existence was insignificant on Friday, they found their monster at the end of it all. That monster was Aritz Aduriz, and he is your new champion. 

He is 38 years old, yet he belies all the constrictions and limitations of normal life. Instead, he scores goals like the 88th minute winner he notched against Barca. Most goals are the same thing, the same dream, a dream had by a footballer, a dream about being a goal at all, that is never realised.

But this goal happened, and it was transcendent. This goal reset the space-time continuum. This goal was both the dream and the monster, and Aduriz was its everlasting creator. Bow down.


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