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Wolves 1-0 Fulham: Pedro Neto strike extends Cottagers’ nightmare start to the season

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wolves 1 0 fulham pedro neto strike extends cottagers nightmare start to the season

Pedro Neto’s strike condemned Fulham to the joint-worst start to a top-flight season in their history and left Scott Parker in dire need of new players before Monday’s transfer deadline.

Only once before, in the 1951-52 season, have the Cottagers lost their first four matches in a season in the top tier, and that campaign ended in relegation.

Though this was an improvement on their first three displays, especially in defence, Fulham still could not take their chances when they came. Not long after Neto had put Wolves in front in the 56th minute, substitute Aboubakar Kamara wasted a glorious chance to equalise.

Fulham's nightmare start to the season continued as Wolves earned a 1-0 win at Molineux

Fulham’s nightmare start to the season continued as Wolves earned a 1-0 win at Molineux

Pedro Neto broke the deadlock in the second half for the hosts with a fine left-footed drive

Pedro Neto broke the deadlock in the second half for the hosts with a fine left-footed drive  

Fulham keeper Alphonso Areola cannot keep Neto's strike out after making fine saves earlier

Fulham keeper Alphonso Areola cannot keep Neto’s strike out after making fine saves earlier

The young winger celebrates after giving Nuno Espirito Santo's side the lead at Molineux

The young winger celebrates after giving Nuno Espirito Santo’s side the lead at Molineux

MATCH FACTS 

Wolves (3-4-3): Patricio; Saiss, Coady, Boly; Kilman, Neves, Dendoncker, Semedo (Hoever 78); Neto (Traore 82), Podence (Moutinho 71), Raul

Subs not used: Ruddy, Vitinha, Silva, Buur

Booked: Neves

Goals: Neto (56)

Manager: Nuno Espirito Santo

Fulham (4-3-3): Areola; Bryan (Kamara 67), Ream, Le Marchand, Robinson; Cairney, Zambo Anguissa, Aina; Reid (Kebano 81), Cavaleiro (Lookman 67), Mitrovic

Subs not used: Hector, Johansen, Odoi, Rodak

Booked: Le Marchand

Goals: None

Manager: Scott Parker 

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Vice-chairman Tony Khan irritated both Parker and his players when he apologised for the team’s performance on Twitter after last Monday’s 3-0 home defeat by Aston Villa. Though there was no reason to do so here, a major improvement is required after the international break.

Wolves had barely a month’s pause after their 383-day season finally ended in mid-August when they were beaten by Sevilla in the Europa League, and they have struggled to find top form since winning 2-0 at Sheffield United on the opening day of this campaign.

Against a Fulham side lacking confidence, Wolves looked to make a fast start. From his unfamiliar spot at left wing-back, Romain Saiss swung a cross to the far post when Leander Dendoncker tried to head it back for Raul Jimenez. Luckily for the visitors, Tim Ream was quickest to the ball and nodded it behind.

At the other end, summer signing Antonee Robinson pushed forward from left back and found space in the penalty area only to shoot straight at Rui Patricio.

After conceding 10 goals in their first three games, it was no surprise to see Fulham boss Scott Parker take a safety-first approach here. When Wolves had the ball, there were often 11 visiting players behind it. And when the home side did break through, Fulham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola produced an outstanding double save to keep his team level.

Areola dived to his left to keep out Pedro Neto’s angled drive from 20 yards, and then leapt to his feet to deny Nelson Semedo from the follow-up. No wonder Areola celebrated like an outfield player who had just scored a spectacular goal.

Nelson Semedo went closest to opening the scoring as Areola denied the full back

Nelson Semedo went closest to opening the scoring as Areola denied the full back

The Portuguese wing back reacts as he sees his glorious chance go begging in the first half

The Portuguese wing back reacts as he sees his glorious chance go begging in the first half

Fulham new boy Antonee Robinson was making his Premier League debut in a tidy display

Fulham new boy Antonee Robinson was making his Premier League debut in a tidy display

Alexander Mitrovic looks to keep Wolves youngster Max Kilman at bay in a close encounter

Alexander Mitrovic looks to keep Wolves youngster Max Kilman at bay in a close encounter

Wolves moved up a gear at the start of the second half and created two good chances before they took the lead.

Ruben Neves shot just wide from the edge of the box after Semedo and Dendoncker had combined neatly to create space for him, before Max Kilman’s long clearance caught the Fulham defence on their heels and they were bailed out again by Areola, who denied Raul Jimenez when clean through.

Areola could do nothing about the opener, however.

Ivan Cavaleiro is dispossessed by Romain Saiss on his return to his former club on Sunday

Ivan Cavaleiro is dispossessed by Romain Saiss on his return to his former club on Sunday

Areola punches a Joao Moutinho free kick clear as Wolves looked to double their advantage

Areola punches a Joao Moutinho free kick clear as Wolves looked to double their advantage

Mitrovic falls under the challenge of Kilman and Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves

Mitrovic falls under the challenge of Kilman and Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves

Maxime Le Marchand did well to block Dendoncker’s powerful strike but the ball rebounded perfectly for Neto, who drove it low across Areola into the bottom corner with his left foot.

Soon after the goal, Ademola Lookman was brought on for his debut after joining on loan from RB Leipzig, and he should have created the equaliser. The winger spun inside his own half and found a glorious pass for Aleksandar Mitrovic, who squared for Kamara. Unmarked and 10 yards from goal, Kamara managed only to guide a weak shot into the arms of Patricio.

Fulham were much better after Lookman came on, running at Wolves for the first time and pushing them back. With time ticking away, substitute Neeskens Kebano powered on to a loose ball 20 yards out before lashing it narrowly over the bar. Fulham desperately need these moments to start falling in their favour. 

Wolves captain Conor Coady looks to organise his side attempted to hold onto their lead

Wolves captain Conor Coady looks to organise his side attempted to hold onto their lead

The defeat means Scott Parker's side have failed to pick up a point in their first four games

The defeat means Scott Parker’s side have failed to pick up a point in their first four games

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Bournemouth 1-0 Bristol City: Danjuma’s late strike moves the Cherries up to second in Championship

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Arnaut Danjuma earned praise from his manager after climbing off the bench to maintain Bournemouth’s unbeaten league record with victory at home to promotion rivals Bristol City.

The Cherries move up to second in the Championship table while their opponents are now winless in four games and slip down to sixth place.

Both sides struck the woodwork in difficult conditions on the south coast before Danjuma’s decisive intervention late in the game. 

Bournemouth winger Arnaut Danjuma secured a hard-fought win at the Vitality Stadium

Bournemouth winger Arnaut Danjuma secured a hard-fought win at the Vitality Stadium

Bournemouth winger Arnaut Danjuma secured a hard-fought win at the Vitality Stadium

On the Dutch international’s winner, Bournemouth boss Jason Tindall said: ‘When you look around and see someone with the quality of Arnaut Danjuma to go on there and deliver the 20 minutes that he did, it is excellent for us.’

On the unbeaten run, Tindall added: ‘To go eight games undefeated at the start of the season in any league is a really good achievement and the players have to take a lot of credit for that for the hard work they have put in. That is where we want to be, towards the top of the league.’

Young Robins striker Antoine Semenyo carved out the first opportunity, twisting and turning inside the box before firing wide.

Danjuma collected Solanke's through ball and lifted the ball over Bristol City keeper Bentley

Danjuma collected Solanke's through ball and lifted the ball over Bristol City keeper Bentley

 Danjuma collected Solanke’s through ball and lifted the ball over Bristol City keeper Bentley

The visitors looked more dangerous going forward with Tyreeq Bakinson forcing Asmir Begovic into a brilliant full-length low save. 

They were denied again when Joshua King leapt to clear Tomas Kalas’ header off the line before a swift counter saw Dominic Solanke’s effort from a narrow angle deflected just wide.

With seconds remaining in the first half, Bristol City’s Famara Diedhiou wriggled through several challenges inside the box but saw his scuffed shot deflected onto the post.

The hosts should have taken the lead when Lloyd Kelly burst into the box and squared for Solanke but the ball somehow ricocheted off the woodwork, before Stanislas fired inches wide as the pressure built.

After Diedhiou’s weak header was saved by Begovic, the hosts had claims for a penalty waved away when Solanke was felled by keeper Dan Bentley while trying to force a loose ball home.

Dominic Solanke clipped an upright and Junior Stanislas fired narrowly wide for the hosts

Dominic Solanke clipped an upright and Junior Stanislas fired narrowly wide for the hosts

Dominic Solanke clipped an upright and Junior Stanislas fired narrowly wide for the hosts

With 10 minutes left, Solanke slipped substitute Danjuma through to convert smartly for the winning goal.

Dean Holden threw on Chris Martin and Nakhi Wells in search of a winner but the Robins boss was left rueing missed opportunities as his side fell eight points behind leaders Reading.

He said: ‘We have absolutely dominated the first half and I don’t think anyone can argue with that. They haven’t had a shot on goal really, Bentley has had nothing to do. We switch off with ten minutes to go against quality players and they make you pay.’

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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10.30pm Arsenal news LIVE: Ozil training ‘best he can’, Umtiti transfer LATEST, Mike Dean ref for Man Utd

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ARSENAL aim to bounce from defeat against Leicester as they take on Irish side Dundalk in the Europa League.

And then at the weekend it’s old rivals Manchester United in a HUGE Premier League clash.

Follow ALL of the latest Gunners transfer gossip and news below…

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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Jose Mourinho warns Europe ‘remarkable’ Gareth Bale is ready to explode with Spurs hero to be unleashed on LASK

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jose mourinho warns europe remarkable gareth bale is ready to explode with spurs hero to be unleashed on lask

JOSE MOURINHO has warned Europe the real Gareth Bale is coming.

Tonight, the Tottenham boss will hand the Wales superstar his second start since rejoining the club on loan from Real Madrid.

Jose Mourinho is set to start Gareth Bale for Spurs against Royal Antwerp

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Jose Mourinho is set to start Gareth Bale for Spurs against Royal AntwerpCredit: PA:Press Association

Bale, 31, started the north Londoners’ 3-0 win at home to Austrians LASK in last Thursday’s Europa League Group J opener.

And ahead of their clash with Royal Antwerp in Belgium, Mourinho revealed: “Bale is playing. I can see it with my eyes and the scientific data is also telling us he is working very well and improving a lot.

“He’s working very hard and has been a great example for everybody.

“A big guy like him travelled to Burnley on Monday, stayed on the bench for 90 minutes and his behaviour as a team guy has been incredible.

“His behaviour as a Tottenham man is remarkable.

“We will see he is already at a good level and, hopefully, he can fly.”

Defenders Eric Dier and Japhet Tanganga have not travelled with the squad following their recent injuries.

Striker Son Heung-min, who scored the only goal in the 1-0 win at Burnley, has travelled after signing a deal with the same agency which represents Mourinho.

But the Spurs boss denied it will lead to a conflict of interest with the South Korean, who is set to talk with chairman Daniel Levy about a new contract.

Mourinho added: “I don’t care who represents players, I just care about what players give me on the pitch.

“In relation to his contract, I am not worried about it because he has three years remaining.

The percentage of answers have been round up or down from their decimal points

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The percentage of answers have been round up or down from their decimal points

“I am sure sooner or later that will be resolved.”

Antwerp also won their first match in Group J, beating Ludogorets 2-1 away.

And Mourinho admitted: “This will be our toughest match of the group phase.”

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This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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