Wolves 2-3 Leeds United: Player ratings as Whites seal memorable comeback

Wolves surrendered a two-goal lead as a resilient Leeds United came back to secure a 3-2 win on Friday night.

Jesse Marsch’s men sleepwalked into half-time two goals down before a Raul Jimenez red card changed the game, allowing the visitors to secure a vital three points.

Leeds started fast and nearly carved open their hosts inside the opening 10 seconds, before Dan James blasted over just after the two-minute mark.

At the other end, Adam Forshaw retreated just in time to stop Daniel Podence pulling the trigger at point-blank range after Rayan Ait-Nouri robbed Diego Llorente of possession, before Jack Harrison’s cross was poked narrowly wide by Rodrigo.

The visitors then pressed Ruben Neves into giving away the ball cheaply, with Patrick Bamford firing the wrong side of Jose Sa’s post as Leeds maintained their early pressure.

Lengthy injury treatment to Bamford and Neves – which forced both off – disrupted the fast flow of the first half, but Wolves took the lead almost immediately after they had to haul the Portugal midfielder off. Neves’ replacement Francisco Trincao picked out the run of Jonny Otto, who swept into the far corner to give the hosts a 26th-minute lead.

Trincao rattled the frame of Meslier’s goal in first half stoppage time with a curling effort from distance before Jimenez failed to lob the Frenchman. And eventually this sustained pressure crushed Leeds as Wolves grabbed their second 55 minutes into an elongated first half.

Bruno Lage’s men caught Leeds napping while plotting a free-kick, with Podence squaring for super-sub Trincao to double the lead.

Leeds had it all to do after the break – they hadn’t won after conceding first in the Premier League all season while Wolves had lost just once in last 49 games after scoring first – but were handed a reprieve when Jimenez received a second booking for clattering into Meslier.

Marsch’s men pulled one back just after the hour mark. Luke Ayling struck the post after ghosting in behind Ait-Nouri, and Romain Saiss’ awful clearance had to be swept off the line by Conor Coady, and eventually Jack Harrison was able to slam home.

And Leeds equalised almost immediately after their first goal. James struck the bar before Saiss and Sa fluffed another clearance, allowing Rodrigo to ghost in and finish with the outside of his boot, with Coady unable to stop the ball from crossing the line.

A low cross from Harrison was steered goalwards by James from six yards but Saiss made a great recovery challenge to deny the Welshman, while Dallas’ left-foot strike forced Sa into a stretching save and Charlie Cresswell headed over.

With eight minutes of stoppage time looming, Leeds notched themselves in front for the first time on the night. Wolves failed to deal with a lofty free-kick, and Ayling was on hand to fire through the open legs of Sa.

Trincao forced substitute stopper Kristoffer Klaesson into a flying save as Wolves looked to have the last laugh, but Leeds held on to take a precious three points back to Elland Road.

Lage’s side miss the chance to move back into the top six, while Leeds’ back-to-back wins have moved them seven points clear of the relegation zone.

1. Goalkeeper & defenders

Willy Boly

Boly returned to the starting lineup / Naomi Baker/GettyImages


Jonny opened the scoring / James Baylis – AMA/GettyImages

3. Forwards

Raul Jimenez, Illan Meslier

Jimenez’s challenge was clumsy / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

Leeds United player ratings

Illan Meslier

Meslier was one of several injury casualties / Laurence Griffiths/GettyImages

6. Midfielders

Rodrigo Moreno Machado

Rodrigo was booked for this, of course / James Baylis – AMA/GettyImages

Patrick Bamford

Bamford looked lively in his brief time on the pitch / Marc Atkins/GettyImages

8. Substitutes

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