Blackburn 1-2 Wolves
Blackburn 1 - 2 Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton Wanderers came from behind to beat an injury-hit Blackburn side on the opening day of the season.
Rovers went ahead when Jason Roberts set up debutant Mauro Formica, whose low strike went beyond Wayne Hennessey.
But Wolves hit back straight away as Steven Fletcher headed home Matt Jarvis's cross at the far post.
Stephen Ward scored the winner after the break, amid frantic scenes after Kevin Doyle missed a penalty given for Michel Salgado's foul on Jarvis.
Wolves were able to capitalise on a Rovers defence missing three key players.
Ryan Nelsen and Chris Samba were already out injured when Gael Givet fell ill on the eve of the game.
That meant 19-year-old Scotland international Grant Hanley and midfielder Steven Nzonzi were paired at centre-back.
And Wolves targeted Nzonzi in particular, unsettling him with a barrage of long balls and crosses.
Fletcher and Kevin Doyle, who played despite pre-match concerns over a knee injury, also linked up well in attack to stretch Blackburn, with marauding support from Jarvis and Stephen Hunt on the wings.
Roger Johnson took the captain's armband on his Wolves debut, but both defences struggled early on.
The pace of Martin Olsson and Junior Hoilett down the wings created space for Rovers and led to an opening spell dominated by corners.
Blackburn thought they had taken an early lead on eight minutes after Pedersen crossed for Hoilett.
His close-range shot was saved by Hennessey who just managed to keep it from going over the line.
On 20 minutes a long ball over the top was held up by Roberts who managed to wriggle free with strength and skill, before setting up Formica.
The Argentina international, who was signed in January, found himself free on the left of the penalty area, and shot low across the keeper, and the goal fired up Wolves who stepped up the pressure.
Just two minutes later the visitors were allowed far too much space as Jarvis crossed for former Burnley striker Fletcher to head home at the far post.
The rest of the first half was a scrappy affair, with neither team having the cutting edge or quality to go ahead.
Two minutes after the restart, Salgado brought down Jarvis inside the area for a penalty.
Robinson saved Doyle's tame spot-kick, but after a scramble the ball came back to Ward who struck a sweet left-footed volley into the corner from the edge of the area.
Wolves now looked more solid defensively, and were able to counter-attack well.
Blackburn threw on new signing David Goodwillie on 72 minutes, and he had a late shot which sailed wide. Their best hope was from corners but there was no way through.
But Wolves ended the game well in control to take a deserved three points.
Wolves manager Mick McCarthy:
"Good start but let's not get carried away 37 to go. We've got tough games ahead.
"The game was end to end. Once we scored in the second half I felt we controlled the game. That's something we've been working on.
"I am sure Steve [Kean] will be bemoaning his luck at Samba's injury and losing [Phil] Jones.
"We made the most of it. Doyle and Fletcher are both good players. They were great today and caused the two centre backs real problems."
Blackburn manager Steve Kean:
"We are bitterly disappointed because we had a great pre season.
"Losing Gael Givet at the very last minute, Steven Nzonzi had to go back there and play there for us for the first time.
"I thought he did well considering it was a partnership thrown together at the last minute due to illness.
"11 players have left the club and we've had three in.
"We need to strengthen in different areas and make sure we have a competitive squad."
- 01 Robinson
- 02 Salgado
- 03 Olsson
- 31 Hanley
- 07 Emerton Booked (Rochina - 46' )
- 08 Dunn Booked
- 10 Formica (Blackman - 84' )
- 12 Pedersen (Goodwillie - 72' )
- 15 Nzonzi Booked
- 23 Hoilett
- 30 Roberts Booked
- 13 Bunn
- 32 Ribeiro
- 38 Anderson
- 39 Henley
- 20 Rochina
- 22 Blackman
- 25 Goodwillie
- 01 Hennessey
- 05 Stearman Booked (Foley - 49' )
- 11 Ward
- 14 Johnson Booked
- 16 Berra
- 08 Henry
- 12 Hunt (Maierhofer - 90' )
- 17 Jarvis (Elokobi - 75' )
- 24 O'Hara
- 10 Fletcher
- 29 Doyle
- 31 De Vries
- 03 Elokobi
- 32 Foley
- 19 Hammill
- 20 Milijas
- 09 Ebanks-Blake
- 33 Maierhofer
Live Text Commentary
Full Time The referee signals the end of the game.90:00 +3:56
The ball is crossed by Michel Salgado, save made by Wayne Hennessey.90:00 +3:30
David Goodwillie takes a shot. Blocked by Jamie O'Hara.90:00 +0:21
Michel Salgado challenges Karl Henry unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Jamie O'Hara.89:00 Substitution
Substitution Stefan Maierhofer comes on in place of Stephen Hunt.89:00 Booking
Booking Steven Nzonzi goes into the book for unsporting behaviour.88:47
Steven Nzonzi gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kevin Foley. Wayne Hennessey takes the free kick.88:37
David Dunn delivers the ball, save by Wayne Hennessey.87:09
Stephen Hunt produces a left-footed shot from outside the penalty box and misses right.85:24
Corner taken right-footed by David Dunn to the near post, Kevin Doyle manages to make a clearance.85:17
The ball is sent over by David Goodwillie, blocked by George Elokobi.84:17
The referee blows for offside. Free kick taken by Paul Robinson.83:18 Substitution
Substitution (Blackburn) makes a substitution, with Nick Blackman coming on for Mauro Formica.82:59
Effort from deep inside the area by David Goodwillie misses to the right of the target.82:37
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Martin Olsson by Stephen Hunt. Free kick taken by David Dunn.81:17
Centre by Kevin Doyle, blocked by Martin Olsson. Corner taken by Stephen Hunt from the right by-line, clearance made by Grant Hanley.79:03
Corner from the left by-line taken by Stephen Hunt, clearance made by David Dunn.78:25
Kevin Doyle gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Martin Olsson. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.77:40
George Elokobi fouled by Mauro Formica, the ref awards a free kick. Wayne Hennessey restarts play with the free kick.77:07
Corner taken right-footed by David Dunn from the right by-line, clearance by George Elokobi.
The ball is sent over by David Goodwillie, Christophe Berra gets a block in.74:39 Substitution
Substitution George Elokobi replaces Matthew Jarvis.74:21
Ruben Rochina produces a left-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that misses to the left of the goal.72:38
Mauro Formica takes a shot. Stephen Hunt gets a block in. Shot by David Dunn from outside the box goes high over the target.72:32
Michel Salgado sends in a cross, clearance by Roger Johnson.71:01 Substitution
Substitution Morten Gamst Pedersen goes off and David Goodwillie comes on.70:36
Inswinging corner taken by Matthew Jarvis, Headed effort on goal by Stephen Ward from inside the penalty box misses to the right of the goal.70:05
A cross is delivered by Kevin Doyle.69:29
Jamie O'Hara crosses the ball.67:41
Morten Gamst Pedersen delivers the ball, save by Wayne Hennessey.64:33
Outswinging corner taken by David Dunn, Steven Nzonzi takes a shot. Blocked by Jason Roberts.63:58
Centre by Michel Salgado.63:32
Mauro Formica takes a shot. Roger Johnson gets a block in.62:59
Roger Johnson produces a cross, clearance by Steven Nzonzi.61:52
Steven Nzonzi gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Kevin Doyle. Jamie O'Hara crosses the ball from the free kick left-footed from left channel.61:37
Ruben Rochina crosses the ball, clearance by Jamie O'Hara.60:23
Kevin Doyle challenges Ruben Rochina unfairly and gives away a free kick. Paul Robinson restarts play with the free kick.59:59 Booking
Booking Caution for Jason Roberts.58:31
Kevin Foley delivers the ball, Steven Nzonzi makes a clearance.56:43
The ball is sent over by Michel Salgado.56:03
Foul by Stephen Hunt on Ruben Rochina, free kick awarded. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.54:28
Stephen Hunt sends in a cross, blocked by Martin Olsson. Stephen Hunt takes a short corner, Morten Gamst Pedersen makes a clearance.53:13
Outswinging corner taken by David Dunn, Header from deep inside the area by Mauro Formica goes harmlessly over the crossbar.52:51
Corner taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen from the left by-line to the near post, Roger Johnson makes a clearance.52:38
David Dunn takes a shot. Blocked by Christophe Berra.52:24
Short corner taken by David Dunn.52:18
The ball is delivered by David Hoilett, Stephen Ward gets a block in.51:59
Foul by Karl Henry on Mauro Formica, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen.50:59
Corner taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen.50:21
The ball is swung over by Kevin Foley, Steven Nzonzi makes a clearance.49:23
Stephen Hunt delivers the ball, blocked by Martin Olsson. Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Stephen Hunt from the right by-line to the near post, David Dunn makes a clearance.48:47
Grant Hanley challenges Steven Fletcher unfairly and gives away a free kick. Kevin Foley takes the direct free kick.48:06 Substitution
Substitution Kevin Foley on for Richard Stearman.46:45 Penalty
Penalty taken by Kevin Doyle saved by Paul Robinson. Blackburn 1-2 Wolverhampton.46:44 Goal scored
Goal! - Stephen Ward - Blackburn 1 - 2 Wolves Stephen Ward fires in a goal from outside the box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Blackburn 1-2 Wolverhampton.45:38
Penalty awarded for a foul by Michel Salgado on Matthew Jarvis.45:01
The referee starts the second half.45:01 Substitution
Substitution Ruben Rochina on for Brett Emerton.45:00 +2:14 Half time
Half Time It is the end of the first-half.45:00 +1:54
Shot from just outside the area by Jamie O'Hara misses to the right of the target.45:00 +1:39
Stephen Ward takes a shot. Blocked by Steven Nzonzi.44:21
Karl Henry challenges Mauro Formica unfairly and gives away a free kick. David Dunn takes the free kick.43:32
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Kevin Doyle by Michel Salgado. Christophe Berra restarts play with the free kick.43:11
David Hoilett delivers the ball.42:37
Martin Olsson delivers the ball.41:36
A cross is delivered by David Dunn.41:01
Morten Gamst Pedersen decides to take the corner short, David Hoilett takes a shot. Blocked by Steven Fletcher.40:55
The ball is delivered by Brett Emerton, Richard Stearman manages to make a clearance.40:29
Michel Salgado sends in a cross, Stephen Ward gets a block in.37:10
Free kick crossed right-footed by Jamie O'Hara from right channel, clearance made by Martin Olsson.37:10 Booking
Booking The referee books Brett Emerton for unsporting behaviour.36:53
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Steven Fletcher by Brett Emerton.36:16
Jamie O'Hara produces a left-footed shot from just outside the box that misses to the right of the goal.35:14 Booking
Booking The referee books David Dunn for unsporting behaviour.35:09
Free kick awarded for a foul by David Dunn on Jamie O'Hara. Roger Johnson restarts play with the free kick.34:47
Free kick awarded for a foul by David Dunn on Kevin Doyle. Roger Johnson takes the direct free kick.34:18
Unfair challenge on David Dunn by Steven Fletcher results in a free kick. David Dunn takes the free kick.32:29
Jason Roberts concedes a free kick for a foul on Roger Johnson. Free kick taken by Wayne Hennessey.31:53
Michel Salgado crosses the ball, Richard Stearman manages to make a clearance.31:46
David Hoilett sends in a cross, Matthew Jarvis gets a block in.31:39
The ball is sent over by Morten Gamst Pedersen, Stephen Ward manages to make a clearance.30:58
Kevin Doyle sends in a cross, Header from deep inside the area by Roger Johnson goes harmlessly over the crossbar.28:20
Matthew Jarvis crosses the ball, clearance made by Grant Hanley.27:15
A cross is delivered by Stephen Ward, Effort on goal by Stephen Hunt from deep inside the area goes harmlessly over the bar.26:03
Shot from outside the area by Stephen Hunt misses to the left of the goal.24:50
Karl Henry concedes a free kick for a foul on Jason Roberts. Strike on goal comes in from Morten Gamst Pedersen from the free kick.23:28
Kevin Doyle delivers the ball, Michel Salgado gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Matthew Jarvis from the left by-line, Header from close range by Christophe Berra misses to the right of the goal.21:52
The assist for the goal came from Matthew Jarvis.21:52 Goal scored
Goal! - Steven Fletcher - Blackburn 1 - 1 Wolves Steven Fletcher scores a headed goal from inside the six-yard box. Blackburn 1-1 Wolverhampton.21:48
Matthew Jarvis delivers the ball,20:50 Booking
Booking Richard Stearman receives a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.19:22
Jason Roberts provided the assist for the goal.19:22 Goal scored
Goal! - Mauro Formica - Blackburn 1 - 0 Wolves Mauro Formica finds the net with a goal from inside the penalty box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Blackburn 1-0 Wolverhampton.18:10
David Dunn delivers the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, Christophe Berra manages to make a clearance. Brett Emerton has an effort at goal from outside the penalty box missing to the wide right of the target.18:10 Booking
Booking Roger Johnson receives a yellow card.17:41
Roger Johnson concedes a free kick for a foul on Morten Gamst Pedersen.15:03
The ball is delivered by Martin Olsson, Matthew Jarvis gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by David Dunn, clearance made by Christophe Berra. Corner taken left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen, Close range headed effort by Mauro Formica goes wide of the left-hand post.13:45
The ball is swung over by Stephen Hunt, blocked by Michel Salgado.12:14
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen, clearance by Richard Stearman. Corner from the left by-line taken by David Dunn, save made by Wayne Hennessey.9:46
Jason Roberts concedes a free kick for a foul on Christophe Berra. Roger Johnson takes the direct free kick.8:16
Morten Gamst Pedersen sends in a cross, Headed effort from inside the area by Jason Roberts misses to the right of the target.7:50
Shot from 20 yards by Jamie O'Hara. Paul Robinson makes a comfortable save.7:40
Centre by Stephen Hunt, Grant Hanley makes a clearance.5:02
Free kick awarded for a foul by Brett Emerton on Stephen Hunt. Direct free kick taken by Christophe Berra.4:28
Effort from the edge of the area by Matthew Jarvis goes wide of the left-hand post.3:53
Free kick awarded for a foul by Martin Olsson on Matthew Jarvis. Jamie O'Hara delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right wing, Grant Hanley makes a clearance.3:17
Centre by Morten Gamst Pedersen, David Hoilett takes a shot. Wayne Hennessey makes a save.0:17
Foul by Kevin Doyle on Steven Nzonzi, free kick awarded. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.0:00
The match gets underway.
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