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Pre-season: Deportivo Alaves 0 Wolves 4 - Report

Wolves got off to the perfect start in their pre-season camp in Spain with a comfortable friendly win over Deportivo Alaves at the Camilo Cano Stadium.

Wolves players celebrate (Getty)
Wolves players celebrate (Getty)

The Premier League side dominated the Spanish second division club from the opening minute and looked after the ball well.

Raul Jimenez handed Wolves a deserved lead with a trademark nerve-free penalty before Pedro Neto calmly slotted home a second – as Wolves’ free-flowing attacking football proved impressive.

A second half formation change saw Daniel Podence occupy the number 10 role and just six minutes after he came on he headed home the third, despite being 5ft 4ins tall.

Centre-back Max Kilman added a wonderful fourth goal with a 70-yard charge forward before slotting home, as Wolves capped off a superb win.

Daniel Podence scores (Getty)

Bruno Lage named a strong starting XI in a 4-3-3 formation.

Senior players Jose Sa, Nelson Semedo, Hwang Hee-chan and Adama Traore missed on the squad altogether but travelled to watch their team-mates.

There was also a late change to the squad in Spain as Andreas Sondergaard flew home for personal reasons and was replaced by fellow young goalkeeper James Storer.

Neto scores (Getty)

Ruben Neves was playing deep in the holding midfield role but as Wolves dominated the ball in the early stages, he was running the show and spraying around some superb cross-field passes.

The first big chance came when Morgan Gibbs-White picked up the ball centrally and raced forward. He fed Jimenez on his right, who looked to cross back to Gibbs-White, but the ball was cleared.

Alaves than created an opportunity with a low cross aimed at Jason, but Rayan Ait-Nouri did well to clear his lines at the back post.

After 22 minutes, Wolves took a deserved lead through Jimenez. A wonderful through ball from Neves sent Neto through, and his first touch was excellent to take him into the box. He was wiped out by an Alaves defender and Jimenez stepped up to send the goalkeeper the wrong way from the penalty spot.

Wolves were finding so much joy in-between the lines and should have doubled their lead when Moutinho played an eye-catching pass to Leander Dendoncker, who was free in the box. His strong shot was tipped over the bar by Jesus Owono.

Raul (Getty)

Carlos Benavidez then fired over with a volley from the edge of the box as Alaves looked for a way back into the game.

On the brink of half-time Wolves finally made it 2-0. Gibbs-White starred when he picked up the ball centrally, played a one-two with Jimenez, and then fed Neto on the left flank. The winger finished low to double the lead.

That goal was the last major action of the half as Wolves entered the break comfortably winning 2-0.

At half-time Wolves changed to a 4-2-3-1 formation as Podence replaced Dendoncker and played in the number 10 role. Kilman also replaced Willy Boly while Alaves made six changes.

Just six minutes after coming on, Podence scored Wolves’ third as the smallest player on the field found the back of the net with a header. He did well to dummy the ball and send Jonny Castro Otto away down the right. Podence then raced into the box and met Jonny’s cross with an accurate header.

After an hour the impressive Gibbs-White was replaced by Theo Corbeanu, while Nathan Collins came on for his first appearance in a Wolves shirt when he replaced Coady. Neves took the captain’s armband.

Raul scores (Getty)

Naturally in pre-season friendlies of this nature, the game began to slow as it approached a drinks break in the 68th minute, as neither side had created many opportunities prior.

After that drinks break, Corbeanu burst into life and danced to the byline after skipping beyond two defenders. Despite the tight angle he took aim and his powerful effort was parried away.

Podence then popped up on the right inside the box and had his low cross, aimed for Jimenez, cleared by a defender just yards from the striker. However, at the other end, Matija Sarkic was forced into a save and tipped the ball onto the bar.

Morgan Gibbs-White celebrates with Pedro Neto (Getty)

Substitute Luke Cundle almost added Wolves’ fourth with a fine curled effort that was tipped around the post.

A fourth goal finally came and it came in spectacular fashion. Kilman picked the ball up inside his own half, at least 70 yards out, and charged forward before tucking home into the bottom corner.

That incredible effort capped off the game as Wolves emerged victorious.

Wolves: Sarkic, Jonny (Lembikisa, 77), Coady (Collins, 59), Boly (Kilman, 45), Ait-Nouri (Gomes, 77), Neves (Hodge, 77), Dendoncker (Podence, 45), Moutinho (Griffiths, 77), Gibbs-White (Corbeanu, 59), Jimenez (Cundle, 77), Neto (Campbell, 77).

Subs not used: Smith, Storer, Mosquera, Bueno, Ronan.

Alaves: Owono (Sivera, 45), Anderson (Tenaglia, 62), Abqar (Mendes, 81), Lejeune (Sedlar, 45), Duarte (Lopez, 45), Sevilla (Perera, 62), Benavidez (Abdallahi, 62), Guridi (Moya, 45), Jason (Alkain, 45), Rioja (Abde, 62), Hara (Miguel, 45).

Subs not used: Adrian, Sylla, Ropero, Joseda, Balboa.

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