Man City vs Wolves result: Adama Traore’s late double derails Pep Guardiola’s Premier League title defence

Manchester City 0-2 Wolves: The champions now trail Liverpool by eight points at the top of the table

Richard Jolly
Etihad Stadium
Sunday 06 October 2019 16:52
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The full value of James Milner’s injury-time penalty at Anfield became clear 23 hours later. It was not Liverpool who stumbled at home, but Manchester City. A shock defeat to Wolves leaves them eight points behind the league leaders, facing an uphill task to retain their title.

City have already dropped more points at home than they did last season but Wolves, incisive in attack and dogged in defence, could savour a historic win. They had not triumphed away at City in the top flight since 1979 and Adama Traore’s late brace was the reward they merited for an outstanding performance.

Wolves had beaten all of the rest of the big six last season. Now they have added the scalp of City and, after their slow start to the league season, they are resembling their old selves.

In contrast, City looked flat and fractious, collecting six bookings but rarely threatening Rui Patricio’s goal. They missed the injured Kevin de Bruyne and while David Silva struck the bar with a free-kick, Pep Guardiola’s side had precious little inspiration. This was the antithesis of the Etihad Stadium’s previous Premier League game, the 8-0 evisceration of Watford.

While City were muted, Wolves scarcely looked a team who had played in Turkey 68 hours earlier and even the early loss of Romain Saiss did not disturb them. They showed organisation, concentration and determination. They had a well-configured defence, crowded the centre of the pitch and released their strikers on the counter-attack. Those forwards should have found the net in a match sooner that doubled up as an illustration of Nicolas Otamendi’s shortcomings.

Wolves’ goal came after the Argentinian, all too typically, ended up on his backside. Joao Cancelo marred his full league debut by giving the ball away and, as Raul Jimenez broke, Otamendi went to ground needlessly. The Mexican squared it for Traore to slot in his shot.

Having gone 13 months without a goal, he had two in 15 minutes when Jimenez released him on another break. It was a vindication of Nuno, who had moved the electric Traore into the forward line when he removed the wasteful Patrick Cutrone.

Adam Traore celebrates giving Wolves the lead

The Italian had miscued a shot when Otamendi, with misguided wanderlust, had left him free to run at goal. Otamendi also ended up in a characteristic pose, on his backside, when Jimenez went past him after Riyad Mahrez had somehow picked out the Mexican. Fernandinho twice came to City’s rescue, first blocking Jimenez’s shot and then Cutrone’s effort from the rebound.

While Rui Patricio had to save well from Raheem Sterling, the goalkeeper was underworked. It was a sign of the strength of his teammates, and quite how poor City were.

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