Wolves progressed to the fifth round of the FA Cup after defeating Shrewsbury Town in a fourth-round replay on Tuesday night.
The result did not drastically change the landscape of upcoming Blanks, as the Premier League side still have to face Bristol City before their Gameweek 31 fate is sealed.
If they beat the Championship outfit then their meeting with Arsenal on the weekend of March 16 will be postponed. Defeat at the hands of Bristol City would see that fixture go ahead, with the Gunners already out of the FA Cup.
How Wolves got on, in what proved to be a tough game for them, is the focus of this latest Scout Notes article.
Wolves 3-2 Shrewsbury
Goals: Matt Doherty x2 (£5.3m), Ivan Cavaleiro (£5.2m)
Assists: Jonny x2 (£4.3m), Doherty
Wolves’ FA Cup replay was all about Matt Doherty (£5.3m) as he had a hand in every single one of their goals against Shrewsbury Town. It was another match that demonstrated his huge attacking potential, as he scored twice and provided the assist for Ivan Cavaleiro‘s (£5.2m) winning goal.
His opener was a back-post header after Shrewsbury goalkeeper Steve Arnold could not collect a cross from Jonny (£4.3m). His second was a hugely important strike as it ensured Wolves did not go into the half-time break 2-1 down at home to League One opposition.
While some Fantasy managers might be disappointed that Doherty saved what was, effectively, a double-figure haul for the FA Cup, performances like this just continue to highlight what an asset he is for our teams this season. With the wind in his sails, plus returns in both of his last two Premier League matches, he is in the perfect form to deliver again at home to Newcastle on Monday night.
Left-back Jonny was also an important player for Wolves in their FA Cup tie as he provided the assist for both of Doherty’s goals. It was another match in which Nuno Espirito Santo’s side were most threatening down the flanks, thanks to the ability of their attacking full-backs. If it were not for them, things might have been more embarrassing for them on Tuesday night.
Nuno rotated his front line to bring in Helder Costa (£4.7m) and Cavaleiro flanking Adama Traoré (£5.1m), the three of them struggling to show any rhythm. As a side note, that seems to be a recurring theme for those three players this season, which helps us feels secure in ongoing starts for Raúl Jiménez (£6.7m) and Diogo Jota (£6.0m) who were benched and rested respectively.
“We were ahead with the first moment, the first shot on goal we scored, but after it, we kept the ball with no real threat and when they scored we started playing, but it was always rushed and not the best way to play football. We got the job done, not in the best way, the way we want to do. The boys, after they got scared, started playing – they know there’s no easy games in football.” – Nuno Espirito Santo
Perhaps of some concern when it comes to the return of FPL at the weekend, is Wolves’ defence. With Newcastle coming to Molineux on Monday night, there will be plenty of managers starting Rui Patrício (£4.5m), Ryan Bennett (£4.1m) or Willy Boly (£4.6m) in the hope of capitalising on a clean sheet. The fact that Wolves conceded twice to a side operating two divisions below them, plus one clean sheet in eight Premier League matches, might make owners of those assets think twice.
That may be especially because the first choice back-five were all in place for the FA Cup fourth-round replay. With Jonny and Doherty on the flanks, it was the usual centre-back trio of Conor Coady (£4.5m), Bennett and Boly. The only difference in that department was that goalkeeper Patrício was given the night off, with John Ruddy (£4.3m) deputising. The stand-in shot-stopper was to blame for Shrewsbury’s second goal, the ball slipping through his hands. Meanwhile, Wolves were also quite vulnerable from set pieces on the night too.
“After we scored so early, I thought that we could have play better, then we allowed them to get back in the game. It made our task very harder.” – Nuno
There was a change in the middle of the park as Romain Saïss (£4.2m) and Morgan Gibbs-White (£4.3m) came in for Rúben Neves (£4.9m) and Joao Moutinho (£5.2m). The latter has become something of a potential differential option in recent weeks so it was pleasing for Fantasy managers eyeing him up to see nothing more than a 20-minute cameo for him.
Meanwhile, Neves’ presence on the bench confirms he is available for selection following a knock sustained against Everton on Saturday. Jota and Rúben Vinagre (£4.3m) were not risked with their issues though.
Wolves XI (3-4-3): Ruddy; Boly, Coady, Bennett; Jonny, Saïss, Gibbs-White, Doherty; Costa (Moutinho 69′), Traoré (Jiménez 77′), Cavaleiro (Ennis 88′).