Wolves' Raul Jimenez rescues important point against 10-man Everton

Wolves 2-2 Everton: Richarlison scored a superb double on his debut but Wolves twice hit back

Tim Nash
Saturday 11 August 2018 19:41
Raúl Jiménez celebrates his late goal
Raúl Jiménez celebrates his late goal

Richarlison paid back a hefty chunk of the record £50m fee Everton paid for him by scoring twice on his debut as the 10-man Toffees earned a point at Premier League new boys Wolves.

The Brazilian scored his first double in English football as Marco Silva's side survived the 41st-minute red card of their captain Phil Jagielka.

But Wolves were always in the game and equalised each time courtesy of Ruben Neves and debutant Raul Jimenez.

Wolves included four of their 10 summer signings in their starting line-up as they made their return to the Premier League against Everton.

Phil Jagielka was shown an early red

Some 2,281 days after their last appearance in the top flight, in May 2012, Molineux throbbed to the excitement of the home supporters after a six-year absence from the big time and the stadium was awash with colour, helped by 30,000 gold and black flags adorning every seat thanks to 30 volunteers.

Rui Patricio, Jonny Castro Otto, Joao Moutinho and Raul Jimenez made their competitive debuts for the home side, while Willy Boly and Diogo Jota were playing for the first time since their season-long loans were made permanent.

Wolves had five Portuguese players in their team – Patricio, Moutinho, Ruben Neves, Helder Costa and Jota – a Premier League record.

Everton included only Richarlison, signed from Watford for £50m, to start of their six senior new arrivals, with Lucas Digne on the bench and Kurt Zouma, Yerry Dina, Bernard and Andre Gomez not considered ready to feature.

A rare slip by Boly gave Everton the first sight of goal in the 11th minute but Seamus Coleman, the right back, could only direct a weak shot straight at Patricio.

Richarlison earned an early booking two minutes later when he caught Moutinho late with a side-on challenge.

It was the former Watford striker who was the visitors' hero in the 17th minute however.

Richarlison celebrates his opener

The Brazilian forward was perfectly placed to prod home the opening goal after Boly and Cenk Tosun had tussled in the air for Leighton Baines's free kick, and the loose ball bounced off Boly.

There was an element of sloppiness to the goal from a defensive point of view, and for a while Wolves, with only three players of any Premier League experience on the pitch, and Matt Doherty and Conor Coady only had one substitute appearance with Ryan Bennett, struggled in possession with numerous passes going astray and looked a little nervous in their play as Everton gained the upper hand.

The Toffees couldn't turn their territorial advantage into anything worthy in front of goal though, and Wolves gradually regained their composure.

Nuno Espirito Santo's side were given the chance to haul themselves back in the game four minutes before the break, when Everton captain Phil Jagielka was sent off.

The former England international had a poor first touch from a pass across the back which allowed Diogo Jota to dart in.

Jagielka brought him down with a lunging challenge which caught the Portuguese around the shins and referee Craig Pawson had no hesitation in quickly producing a red card.

Ruben Neves unleashed a superb, curling effort into the top corner of the net from the resulting free kick 20 yards out to bring Wolves level and almost lift the roof off Molineux.

Neves scored a sublime equaliser

Swirling rain greeted the players at the start of the second half, making the surface slick and greasy.

But it made for added excitement as the game opened up, with chances for both sides.

Neves was several inches away with a dipping 30-yarder after some lovely footwork, then Tosun forced Patricio's first serious save of the game with a sidefooted effort that had the keeper sprawling to his left to turn away.

Jordan Pickford then showed why he was such a star for the watching Gareth Southgate in England's World Cup campaign with a brilliant block with his legs after Doherty's pass saw Jimenez beat the offside trap and try to pick his spot.

The Brazilian enjoyed a debut to remember

Wolves were made to pay for that miss when Everton regained the lead in te 67th minute with another goal from Richarlison.

This time the 21-year-old ran away from Neves on to a short, square pass from Tosun before neatly curling the ball beyond Patricio.

Wolves remained composed however and continued to probe for a second equaliser.

And they were rewarded for their efforts with another top quality goal in which Neves had a heavy influence 10 minutes from time.

The Portuguese playmaker dug out a sublime, pacy cross which just needed the slightest touch from Raul Jimenez to send it flying high into the net, again giving Pickford no chance.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments