Don’t miss the complete replay and highlights of the Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Chelsea match. It’s a thrilling fixture from the England Premier League 2023/2024 season, taking place on Matchday 18. The action kicks off at 13:00 GMT on Sunday, Dec 24, 2023. Be sure to catch all the excitement!
Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Chelsea Full Match Reports
Following their midweek triumph in the League Cup semi-finals, Chelsea experienced a reality check with a resounding thud in a 2-1 loss against Wolverhampton Wanderers, marking their fourth consecutive Premier League (PL) defeat on the road.
Despite 28 years without PL football on Boxing Day, the initial stages of this encounter proved lackluster. The opening moments were best described as ‘uninspiring,’ with both teams struggling to impose themselves on the game. The first half saw scarce opportunities, and it wasn’t until just after the half-hour mark that a clear chance materialized. João Gomes, having his pocket picked by Raheem Sterling, seized a fortunate break. However, as he sprinted toward goal with the expanse of Molineux before him, he opted to shoot, perhaps selfishly, when Cole Palmer and Nicolas Jackson were in support. José Sá saved his effort.
Wolves’ offensive contributions were infrequent, but they gained momentum before halftime. They came agonizingly close to seizing a surprise lead when Hwang Hee-chan broke behind the defense, narrowly sending his shot over the bar. Encouraged by this, the hosts emerged after the break with renewed vigor. Their near-opening goal was thwarted by a remarkable stop from Đorđe Petrović, denying Toti Gomes from point-blank range. Chelsea’s reprieve was short-lived as they fell behind moments later when Mario Lemina directed Sarabia’s corner into the corner.
Mauricio Pochettino, unimpressed, made a double change that nearly paid off immediately, with Christopher Nkunku’s effort cleared off the line by Toti. Wolves displayed resolute defense, exemplified by a last-ditch block that preserved their lead when Craig Dawson slid in to deny Sterling, albeit at the cost of leaving the field injured.
A staggering 11 minutes of stoppage time extended the drama. Wolves believed they had sealed the game when Matt Doherty capitalized on a loose ball in the box, scoring his first Wolves PL goal since returning to the club. However, Chelsea mounted a late response as Nkunku found the net minutes later, setting the stage for a thrilling finish. Nevertheless, it proved insufficient for Chelsea to prevent Wolves from securing a victory that levels them on points heading into Christmas.
Man of the Match: Mario Lemina (Wolverhampton Wanderers).