After Manchester City’s demolition of Watford a fortnight ago, Wolves fans might have been forgiven for making the trip to Etihad Stadium on Sunday with a certain degree of apprehension.
They needn’t have worried. Nuno Espirito Santo’s side struck twice late on to beat the champions 2-0 and maintain their impressive form against the Premier League’s so-called “big six”.
Elsewhere, Liverpool broke Leicester City’s resistance with another stoppage-time winner, while Tottenham’s miserable away form continued with defeat at Brighton.
BBC Sport looks into some of the weekend’s best Premier League statistics.
Wolves – the scourge of the top six
Wolves took the Premier League by storm last season after winning the Championship in 2017-18, finishing seventh and securing a place in Europe for the first time since 1980.
They failed to win any of their first six league games this term, but back-to-back victories – over Watford and now champions Manchester City – have lifted Nuno’s side above Manchester United into 11th place.
Sunday’s remarkable win was the latest in a series of eye-catching results against the Premier League’s top six clubs. Since winning promotion, Wolves have recorded wins against City, Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Manchester United in the league, as well as knocking Liverpool out of the FA Cup at the third-round stage last year.
Only City (26) and Liverpool (25) have registered more Premier League points against the established top six than Wolves (20) since August 2018. Arsenal have collected 14 points against their top-six rivals, with United managing 11 and Spurs only registering nine.
|Record against Premier League’s so-called ‘big six’ since August 2018|
“I am so happy,” Adama Traore – Wolves’ two-goal hero against City – told BBC Match of the Day. “We worked so hard all 90 minutes, not only me but all the team did great work and the important thing is that we had belief.
“This team does not give up, we keep pushing until the end and that is what happened today.”
“Defensively it was very good and very organised,” added Nuno, who has a 75% win rate against City boss Pep Guardiola in all competitions. “The boys worked hard until the end. The fans enjoyed it.
“It has been a long season already, too many games, but we always compete. This is the way we want to work, maintain and sustain this.”
Spurs’ travel sickness continues
As bad weeks go, Mauricio Pochettino’s could not have been much worse.
Just four days after Spurs were humiliated by Bayern Munich in the Champions League, Pochettino’s Tottenham were comprehensively beaten by Brighton in a game in which goalkeeper Hugo Lloris also suffered a dislocated elbow.
The defeat at Amex Stadium extends Spurs’ winless league run away from home to 10 matches, stretching back to a 2-1 win at Fulham on 20 January.
That victory at Craven Cottage was Spurs’ 14th of the 2018-19 campaign in all competitions. They scored an impressive 46 goals in their 19 away matches in that period, conceding only 19 times. Since then, their drop in form on their travels has been staggering. They have won only two of their 17 away games in all competitions, scoring just 18 goals and conceding 31. That’s a goal difference swing of 40.
Their shot conversion rate on their travels has dropped from 19.3 to 8.9 in that time, while they have also faced more shots (276) and enjoyed less possession (52.3%) in their 17 away games since 20 January.
Spurs’ next match away from the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium? A trip to Anfield to play Liverpool on 27 October.
|Tottenham Hotspur away record since 2018 (all comps)|
|21 January 2019 – 5 October 2019||1 August 2018 – 20 January 2019|
|Shot conversion rate||8.9%||19.3%|
Liverpool leave it late – again!
Liverpool, last-gasp winners. Sound familiar?
Not for the first time, Jurgen Klopp’s team left it late to claim maximum points in a Premier League game as James Milner’s 95th-minute penalty earned the hosts a hard-fought 2-1 win against Leicester City at Anfield.
Milner’s strike was the 34th time the Reds have scored a stoppage-time winner in the division – at least nine more than any other side.
So is it a case of Liverpool throwing everything bar the kitchen sink at their opponents in the final stages of games, or do the opposition simply buckle?
Including Milner’s penalty on Saturday – which was awarded after Marc Albrighton’s foul on Sadio Mane – Liverpool’s last three stoppage-time winners have come with a helping hand from their opponents.
In last season’s Merseyside derby at Anfield, a calamitous error from Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford gifted Divock Origi a 96th-minute tap-in in front of a jubilant Kop.
Four months later, Toby Alderweireld’s 90th-minute own goal earned Liverpool a 2-1 win over Spurs, which lifted the Reds above Man City to the top of the Premier League.
Guardiola’s team ultimately beat Klopp’s charges to the title by a single point, but Liverpool’s penchant for striking late in games will no doubt prove a useful weapon in their pursuit of a first top-flight crown in 30 years.
Tammy (joint) top of the charts
Tammy Abraham’s free-scoring form shows no sign of abating after the 22-year-old netted his eighth league goal of the season in Chelsea’s 4-1 win at Southampton.
Abraham’s clever finish from Callum Hudson-Odoi’s pass draws him level with Sergio Aguero at the top of the Premier League’s goalscoring charts – above the likes of Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, Mohamed Salah and Harry Kane.
The former Aston Villa and Swansea City loanee was named in Gareth Southgate’s latest England squad on Thursday, having previously said he was “undecided” on whether to represent the Three Lions or Nigeria – the country of his parents.
Not only has Abraham scored more goals than any of his potential rivals for an England striking berth this season, he has also registered more shots than the likes of Kane, Raheem Sterling and Bournemouth’s Callum Wilson – the only forward in Southgate’s squad with a better shot conversion rate than the Chelsea player.
With Euro 2020 qualifiers against Czech Republic and Bulgaria looming large, Southgate will be hoping Abraham can translate his club form on to the international stage.
|Premier League record in 2019-20|
|Player||Games||Goals||Shots||Shot conversion rate|