VAR rules out Wolves’ equaliser in defeat by Bournemouth

Cunha was adjudged to have fouled Kluivert in the build-up to a Wolves goal
Cunha was adjudged to have fouled Kluivert in the build-up to a Wolves goal - Getty Images/Jack Thomas

Wolves were once again fuming at VAR after being denied a point in controversial circumstances against Bournemouth at Molineux.

The catalogue of perceived injustices at the hands of Stockley Park which have so inflamed Gary O’Neil’s side gained its latest entry when Hee-Chan Hwang’s second-half equaliser was ruled out for a foul in the build-up.

Matheus Cunha was the guilty party, adjudged to have aimed a retaliatory elbow at Justin Kluivert before Nelson Semedo’s centre was headed home on 66 minutes.

It was hard to argue with the decision but Wolves will rightly feel the review system has done them no favours this season.

A red card for Milos Kerkez 10 minutes from time for a two-footed lunge on Matt Doherty delivered some balance but not points with Antoine Semenyo’s first-half strike the difference between the sides.

Matt Doherty turned in the ball in the eighth minute of stoppage time but from an offside position – a check received more with resignation not anger by Molineux

Victory moved Bournemouth to within two points of their best ever Premier League finish – Eddie Howe’s second season in the big time in 2016-17 – which should be a tap in given four more chances to reach their target.

It is some return for a manager whose methods took time to root early in the campaign, and one who started among the favourites in the bookies’ sack race.

Wolves had come from behind to win 2-1 at Bournemouth in the reverse fixture in October, a match in which the home side played half hour a man down after Lewis Cook received his marching orders.

But restored here to the full complement it was Bournemouth who were the better side.

Where Wolves were slow into their stride, Andoni Iraola’s men snapped into the early exchanges, repeatedly pickpocketing dawdling orange shirts.

With a concerned Wolves boss Gary O’Neil frantically urging his midfield to work harder in the press, the mistakes for the home side kept coming.

The left flank had proved the Cherries’ best attack route with both Milos Kerkez and Kluivert both leaping on blunders to force fine saves one on one from Sa from that side.

On 37 minutes an overlap by the defender, played in by Kluivert, delivered a square ball across the goal which Kilman diverted weakly to Semenyo’s feet seven yards out, an invitation he had accepted gratefully, passing the ball past Sa into the Wolves net.