MX23RW : Saturday, January 19 23:19:53
Mar 30, 2018 at 5.30pm UK at ​Riverside Stadium
Attendance: 27,658
Middlesbrough
1-2
WolvesWolverhampton Wanderers
Bamford (90')
FT(HT: 0-2)
Costa (32'), Cavaleiro (37')
Neves (56'), Doherty (71')

Result: Nine-man Wolverhampton Wanderers hang on at Middlesbrough

Result: Nine-man Wolves hang on at Boro
© Offside
Wolves survive 20 minutes with nine men to take a crucial step towards Championship promotion with a 2-1 win over Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium.

Wolverhampton Wanderers survived 20 minutes with nine men to take a crucial step towards Championship promotion with a 2-1 win over Middlesbrough this evening.

The league leaders lost Ruben Neves and Matt Doherty to two yellow cards apiece in the second half but hung on for their first ever victory at the Riverside Stadium.

Patrick Bamford's stoppage-time volley did expose a rare hole in the Wolves rearguard as Nuno Espirito Santo's side bravely regained their six-point cushion on Cardiff City.

Boro held a 67-year unbeaten run against the visitors and were the better side in the opening half an hour, having unsettled Wolves with some physical tackles and high pressing.

Tony Pulis's side were lacking in creativity though and they only fashioned one half-chance as Muhamed Besic's curling effort was blocked by the head of Ryan Bennett.

Despite largely being on the back foot, Wolves themselves boasted a couple of long-range Neves shots which worked Darren Randolph in the same period, and then turned the momentum of the match on its head as Helder Costa and Ivan Cavaleiro hit Boro with a quick double sucker-punch.

Costa thumped a Barry Douglas cross home at the far post on 32 minutes, after Wolves had quickly recycled the ball following Randolph's initial save from the goalscorer.

Randolph was at full stretch again to push away Willy Boly's glancing header five minutes later, only for the opportunistic Cavaleiro to nod home the rebound from a couple of yards out.

There was not much goalmouth action in the second half but there was plenty for referee Stuart Attwell to contend with, starting with a blatant trip by last man George Friend on Costa which went unpunished.

This incident riled Wolves and Neves allowed his temper to flare with late tackles on Adama Traore and Friend in the space of a couple of minutes before the hour mark, which consigned him to an early bath.

Doherty followed Neves down the tunnel for a pair of fouls on the same Boro duo, the second of which was an apparent elbow on Friend which left Wolves two men down with nearly a quarter of the game to play.

The Boro onslaught took a while in coming and when it arrived, Jonny Howson and Stewart Downing both lacked composure from the edge of the box, and Ruddy saved well from Traore diving low at his near post.

Bamford's stunning finish with the outside of his left foot on 94 minutes came too late, although Downing could have snatched Boro a point when he dragged wide from 20 yards out with Ruddy in no man's land.

Boro remain in the final playoff place but only two points separates them from Preston North End in 10th. Meanwhile, three more wins for Wolves will seal their return to the Premier League after a six-year absence.

MIDDLESBROUGH (4-5-1): Randolph; Shotton (Cranie, 70'), Ayala, Gibson, Friend; Clayton (Assombalonga, 70'), Leabitter (Howson, 63'), Besic, Traore, Downing; Bamford

WOLVES (3-4-3): Ruddy; Boly, Coady, Bennett; Douglas, Saiss, Neves, Doherty; Cavaleiro (N'Diaye, 58'), Costa (Gibbs-White, 84'), Afobe (Bonatini, 63')

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Adam Forshaw of Wigan during the Sky Bet Championship match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Wigan Athletic at Amex Stadium on November 4, 2014
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3Tottenham HotspurSpurs22160646222448
4Chelsea23145440192147
5Arsenal23135548321644
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7Watford239683232033
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves239592731-432
9Leicester CityLeicester2394102929031
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham2394103034-431
11Everton238693433130
12Bournemouth2393113342-930
13Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2375112532-726
14Crystal Palace2364132232-1022
15Southampton2357112540-1522
16Burnley2364132343-2022
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2356121931-1221
18Cardiff CityCardiff2354141944-2519
19Fulham2235142049-2914
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2225151337-2411

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