Sam Murphy gives a run down of Wolves win over Ipswich to see Wolves 7 points clear at the top of the league.
In front of the biggest crowd of the season Wolves beat Mick McCarthy’s Ipswich 1-0 in a dominant display to go seven points clear at the top of the table.
With Cardiff loosing 2-0 to Bolton and Bristol City drawing at QPR Wolves were able to extend their lead at the top of the Championship.
This was Wolves fourth clean sheet in a row, and with statistically the best defence in the league the first goal was key to the outcome of the game.
Wolves made one change with the fit Barry Douglas, replacing Ruben Vinagre, at left wing back. Nuno Espirito Santo has made only 25 changes to the match day squad this season, a league low.
Nuno has settled on his first choice eleven, and trusts them to win games even when they are not at their best.
Wolves dominated possession but made a lacklustre start to the game typified by a rare mistake by Connor Coady’s whose back pass left Ruddy scrambling to control the ball. John Ruddy had very little further to do in the game.
The match then sprung into life in 34th minute when Diogo Jota was played through by a superb lofted pass from Willy Boly.
Jota’s shot which was well blocked by the Ipswich defence which was a theme throughout the game, Ipswich like all McCarthy sides were well organised and defended in numbers.
Wolves took the lead five minutes before half time through a quality finish from Ivan Cavaleiro. Jota was able to cross the ball which found its way through to Cavaleiro, after a rare moment of hesitation from the Ipswich defence.
Cavaleiro curled a shot into the bottom corner nearly breaking the net leaving Bialkowski rooted to the spot in the Ipswich goal.
Wolves forward three found more space in the second half and created more chances as the game became more open with Ipswich looking to equalise.
Wolves should have increased their lead with some good interplay between Bonatini and Jota who fed Cavaleiro only for his goal bound shot to be blocked.
Ipswich’s best chance of the game fell to Freddie Sears who was free in Wolves penalty box after some good build up play and a neat pull back.
Sears was closed down quickly from three Wolves defenders causing his snap shot to go well wide and not trouble Ruddy in goal.
Deep into the second half Ruben Neves, Wolves’s best player of the afternoon, took more and more control of the game.
He played two delightful chips into the box first for Costa who volleyed the ball first time over the bar. Secondly for an advanced Romain Saiss, who headed wide, but should have scored to secure victory for Wolves.
Barry Douglas nearly has his second goal from a direct free kick this season, only for the ball to graze the side netting.
Both Helder Costa and Bright Enobakhare came on as substitutes and had lively cameos, both involved in two of the best chances of the game.
Bright’s best chance of the game came late on in the game as he was passed the ball by Alfred N’Diaye on the edge of the box and he scooped the ball just over cross bar.
Wolves are becoming a relentless machine at the top of the Championship with the only criticism being that they have only scored three goals in four game.
However with a team, that former Wolves manager Mick McCarthy called ‘bonkers’ after the game, Wolves are on course for a record breaking season.
Millwall will be a tough test on Boxing day but if they are as ruthless as they were against the Tractor Boys Wolves will be entering 2018 with the Premier League in sight.