It was an embarrassing afternoon for Wolves yesterday as they were thumped 4-0 at home by Burnley.
Chris Wood’s first hat-trick sealed all three points before half time and Ashley Westwood’s long-range strike put the gloss on the win.
Is there anything that can be learned from a game like this or is it just a case of an afternoon to forget?
We think the former and have picked out three lessons to take from the game…
Nuno’s message didn’t get through
At his pre-match press conference, Nuno Espirito Santo underlined the importance of maintaining standards in the closing weeks of the season.
Wolves may be marooned in mid-table with little to play for but Nuno said that the remaining games represented an opportunity to build a foundation and confidence for next season.
Yesterday’s performance shows that the players didn’t get the message.
They played like a side on the beach and were shown up by a Burnley side battling to ensure their top flight status.
Perhaps this performance will inspire a reaction and ensure that Wolves don’t let their standards slip between now and the end of the term, but it shouldn’t take a four-goal home humbling to focus minds.
Moutinho badly missed
Joao Moutinho was ruled out of yesterday’s game with an ankle injury.
His Portuguese countryman Ruben Neves returned to the side after self-isolation but it wasn’t enough to prevent a humbling defeat.
Of course there’s only so much Moutinho could have done, but his pairing with Neves might have helped stem the tide somewhat.
His experience and calm would also have been valuable during a first half when Wolves simply couldn’t get a foothold in the game.
On the evidence of yesterday, Nuno will hope the experienced midfielder is fit to return against West Brom on Bank Holiday Monday.
Back three was an error
At home to Burnley, Wolves could surely have used the back four which has made them look more fluid and expansive at times this season.
The back five ceded the initiative and meant that Daniel Podence and Willian Jose just couldn’t get into the game at all.
Both ended up having fewer touches than Rui Patricio.
That wasn’t completely down to the system – the display was abject and tactics don’t fully explain that – but it didn’t help and set the wrong tone.
Nuno will expect a response from his side against West Brom and a back four might be one way to prompt one.
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