Premier League
Crystal PalaceCrystal Palace1WolvesWolverhampton Wanderers1

Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers: Diogo Jota's late goal rescues point for visitors

By Steve SutcliffeBBC Sport
Diogo Jota
Diogo Jota (right) scored his first Premier League goal of the season at Crystal Palace

Wolves head coach Nuno Espirito Santo says his team's dramatic draw at Crystal Palace is the "starting point" for their Premier League recovery.

Wolves appeared set for a fourth consecutive defeat across all competitions until Diogo Jota's stoppage-time goal rescued a point.

Despite the draw, they remain 19th and remain winless after six top-flight matches but the nature of their fightback - completed in the 96th minute and made more difficult by Romain Saiss's dismissal for two yellow cards - has given Nuno optimism.

"This is football. We have the spirit, the heart and the character to believe until the end," said Nuno, whose side have regular Thursday night Europa League matches adding to their fixture list this season.

"The boys were running up and down and tired. The growing of the team relies on these kind of aspects. We are in the situation where we play Thursday and Sunday."

"This is a starting point. What we did in the first half, lets try to do over and over again."

Leander Dendoncker's own goal had put Palace in front, with the unfortunate Belgian midfielder diverting Joel Ward's wayward shot past Rui Patricio.

But Wolves, who enjoyed the better of the first half with Dendoncker, Matt Doherty and Jota all having chances to open the scoring, merited their point.

The equaliser came through Wilfried Zaha's failure to maintain possession for Palace, Adama Traore galloping clear on the right, with his far-post cross poked home by Jota from four yards as defender Ward lost his balance.

That denied Roy Hodgson's Palace side, who move up to 12th in the table, a fourth win in five matches against Wolves, a win could also have moved them into the top six.

Wolves show quality needed to get out of trouble

While Nuno has not shown signs of being a man under pressure, the way in which the visiting bench exuberantly celebrated Jota's last-gasp goal told a different story.

It had looked like being another miserable afternoon for the Black Country side, who had arrived in London having failed to win any of their opening five top-flight fixtures.

Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolverhampton: Nuno Espirito Santo praises Wolves' spirit

On every occasion that has happened to them in the past, relegation has followed - 2003-04, 1983-84, 1975-76, 1964-65, 1905-06 - but the way in which his side rallied suggests Nuno's team have the quality and heart to avoid the same fate.

With Ruben Neves relegated to the substitutes bench, captain Conor Coady assumed the early responsibility for orchestrating Wolves' attacking play from the centre of defence.

The former midfielder, who was converted into the central figure of Wolves' three-man defence when Nuno arrived in 2017, sprayed several raking cross-field passes to initiate openings.

In the first half, there were few signs of a lack of confidence or fatigue - Wolves have now completed 13 matches this season, almost double the number of most of their domestic rivals.

Doherty's header forced Palace keeper Vicente Guaita into a fine stop, while Dendoncker's close-range strike was blocked close to the Palace goalline.

But it was their attitude to adversity which stood out, as they persevered despite being a man and a goal down in the last 20 minutes.

Substitute Neves curled a right-footed shot just wide while Jota and Traore both saw efforts blocked by a posse of home defenders before Jota's goal.

Palace revert back to type

After a humbling 4-0 reverse at Tottenham this was very much a Palace performance that reverted back to Roy Hodgson's blueprint of defensive discipline and organisation.

Forward-thinking midfielder Andros Townsend was sacrificed for James McArthur in the starting XI as the former England manager again deployed a five-man midfield but this time with personnel capable of stifling the opposition.

Crystal Palace 1-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers: Roy Hodgson "bitterly disappointed" with draw

And that strategy worked during the first period - albeit aided by some errant Wolves finishing - as the teams largely cancelled each other out.

The problem for Hodgson arrived once Ward's deflected strike and Saiss' dismissal put Palace in complete command.

Luka Milivojevic and Kouyate both saw shots from distance deflected behind while substitute Christian Benteke and Jeffrey Schlupp forced Patricio into one-versus-one saves.

But they were simply unable to kill off the game and in committing men forward to do so they showed a lack of game management as they left themselves open to Wolves on the counter-attack.

"I am bitterly disappointed," Hodgson said.

"It feels like a defeat. I didn't expect them to get such a clear goal chance. You want game management and players to use experience to see games through but the feeling is one of disappointment and anguish that we weren't able to see the game through. We have surrendered two points."

Man of the match - Diogo Jota (Wolves)

Diogo Jota
Diogo Jota put in an industrious shift for Wolves and was their most dangerous attacker with four shots on goal

Capital gains for Wolves - the stats

  • Crystal Palace haven't lost any of their last 10 Premier League games against sides starting the day in the bottom three (P10 W7 D3 L0) since a 0-4 defeat to Sunderland in February 2017.
  • Following Diogo Jota's late equaliser, Wolves remain unbeaten in their seven Premier League games in London since their promotion back to the top-flight in 2018, winning three and drawing four of those games.
  • Crystal Palace (P6 W2 D2 L2) have won eight points from their opening six Premier League games this season, their most after six games since the 2016-17 season (10 points).
  • Wolves have conceded five own-goals in the Premier League since their return to the competition in August 2018, the joint-most alongside Burnley in that timeframe (Conor Coady (3), Matt Doherty (1) and Leander Dendoncker (1).
  • Since making his Premier League debut in December 2013, Wilfried Zaha has induced six opposition red cards - the most of any player. Romain Saïss became the eighth Moroccan to receive a red card in the competition.
  • Leander Dendoncker's own goal was Crystal Palace's 100th goal in the Premier League under Roy Hodgson - the first time the Eagles have scored as many under one manager and the first club he has managed in the competition to reach this total.
  • Wolves have made one more change to their staring XI after six Premier League games this season (12) than they did through their first 16 games in the competition last season (11).
  • Diogo Jota's goal for Wolves (94:53) is the latest Crystal Palace have conceded at Selhurst Park in the Premier League since March 2016, when current striker Christian Benteke netted for Liverpool (95:10).

What's next?

Crystal Palace face Norwich at Selhurst Park in their next Premier League fixture on Saturday 28 September (15:00 BST).

Wolves host Reading in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday 25 September (19:45 BST) before resuming their Premier League duties at Molineux against Watford on Saturday 28 September (15:00 BST).


Crystal Palace

Formation 4-5-1

  • 31Guaita
  • 2Ward
  • 24Cahill
  • 12Sakho
  • 3van Aanholt
  • 11Zaha
  • 18McArthurBooked at 45minsSubstituted forMcCarthyat 83'minutes
  • 4Milivojevic
  • 8Kouyaté
  • 15Schlupp
  • 9J AyewBooked at 62minsSubstituted forBentekeat 69'minutes


  • 6Dann
  • 7Meyer
  • 10Townsend
  • 13Hennessey
  • 17Benteke
  • 22McCarthy
  • 34Kelly


Formation 3-4-3

  • 11Rui Patrício
  • 15Boly
  • 16CoadyBooked at 44mins
  • 27SaïssBooked at 73mins
  • 2DohertySubstituted forNevesat 57'minutes
  • 32DendonckerSubstituted forNetoat 65'minutes
  • 28João Moutinho
  • 19Castro Otto
  • 37Traoré
  • 9JiménezSubstituted forCutroneat 76'minutes
  • 18Jota


  • 4Vallejo
  • 7Neto
  • 8Neves
  • 10Cutrone
  • 17Gibbs-White
  • 21Ruddy
  • 29Vinagre
Stuart Attwell

Match Stats

Home TeamCrystal PalaceAway TeamWolves
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Crystal Palace 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Crystal Palace 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.

  3. Goal!

    Goal! Crystal Palace 1, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1. Diogo Jota (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the top left corner. Assisted by Adama Traoré with a cross.

  4. Post update

    Attempt saved. Jeffrey Schlupp (Crystal Palace) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Christian Benteke.

  5. Post update

    Attempt missed. Rúben Neves (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Adama Traoré.

  6. Post update

    Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  7. Post update

    Foul by João Moutinho (Wolverhampton Wanderers).

  8. Post update

    Attempt missed. Cheikhou Kouyaté (Crystal Palace) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is high and wide to the right. Assisted by James McCarthy following a corner.

  9. Post update

    Corner, Crystal Palace. Conceded by Conor Coady.

  10. Post update

    Attempt missed. Gary Cahill (Crystal Palace) right footed shot from outside the box is too high following a set piece situation.

  11. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Patrick van Aanholt (Crystal Palace) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

  12. Post update

    Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  13. Post update

    Foul by João Moutinho (Wolverhampton Wanderers).

  14. Substitution

    Substitution, Crystal Palace. James McCarthy replaces James McArthur.

  15. Post update

    Corner, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Conceded by Patrick van Aanholt.

  16. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Adama Traoré (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Diogo Jota with a cross.

  17. Post update

    Offside, Crystal Palace. Jeffrey Schlupp tries a through ball, but Christian Benteke is caught offside.

  18. Post update

    Attempt saved. Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jeffrey Schlupp.

  19. Substitution

    Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Patrick Cutrone replaces Raúl Jiménez.

  20. Dismissal

    Second yellow card to Romain Saïss (Wolverhampton Wanderers) for a bad foul.


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