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Chorley 0-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers: Vitinha’s superb goal sees Wolves past non-league opponents

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Chorley 0-1 Wolverhampton Wanderers: Vitinha's superb goal sees Wolves past non-league opponents 2

Non-league Chorley were unable to emulate the heroes from 1986 by causing an FA Cup sensation against Wolves – but the National League North side came away with all the credit from their fourth-round tie at Victory Park.

Vitinha’s superb 30-yard shot after 12 minutes proved enough to secure an all-Premier League tie against Arsenal or Southampton at Molineux in the fifth round.

But Nuno Espirito Santo’s side were less than impressive against their part-time opponents.

Chorley had the first shot of the match through Elliot Newby, and after Vitinha had struck his first Wolves goal with the visitors’ only shot on target, it was the hosts who had the best chances.

Crucially, they also pocketed around £120,000 in prize money, plus TV fees, to sustain them through what could be a difficult period after their league was suspended for two weeks amid funding concerns earlier in the day.

Night to remember for Chorley

If this does end up being Chorley’s last game of the season, it is one they will remember for some time, not only for the action on the pitch but also for the huge volley of fireworks that went off behind the main stand minutes into the contest.

For visiting Wolves, it was a step into the unknown. Their starting line-up got changed in the away dressing room, while their substitutes – European Championship winner Rui Patricio and Spain international Adama Traore among them – readied themselves in a sponsors’ lounge.

Seemingly those starting the game on the bench got the better deal.

Wolves boss Nuno paid Chorley the compliment of picking a strong starting line-up, including £35.6m record signing Fabio Silva and England international Conor Coady.

And had this match been played in more imposing surroundings, it could have been mistaken for one of those Premier League games where one side sits back, challenges the opposition to break them down and then hits them on the counter.

Wolves’ return of 76% possession and one shot on target, set against Chorley’s five shots on target, suggests home manager Jamie Vermiglio got his tactics spot on.

Indeed, had Andy Halls, a personal trainer by day, not had his goal-bound header tipped over by John Ruddy after an hour, Chorley might have forced a different outcome.

It was nevertheless a typically English FA Cup tie, enlivened by Vermiglio yelling “nothing wrong with that” when two Wolves players went down under agricultural challenges, and then laughing in Traore’s face amid a brief skirmish.

It was fantastic knockabout stuff. Sadly, the enduring disappointment was that other than staff, media and stewards, no-one was there in person to witness it.

‘Part-time players with a full-time mentality’ – what they said

Chorley boss Jamie Vermiglio, talking to BT Sport: “We are disappointed. That says a lot. I felt the stats were in favour of us, we were excellent, really disciplined and looked like we were going to score every time we got into the box.

“I thought we were tremendous. We should have scored. They tried their hardest. Credit to our lads. These are part-time players with a full-time mentality.”

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo: “We are aware of the difficulties of the pitch. They are in a lower division but they are organised. John Ruddy did his job, everybody knows his quality. He helped us to win the game. The FA Cup means a lot for us.

“We need to press better and react better. The scene was set for us to lose this game. I have been on the other side of games like this. I will be honest, I don’t think many people will remember this game. The quality was not good.”

Portuguese prowess – the stats

  • Wolves have reached the FA Cup fifth round in three of the last five seasons, as many as in the 21 seasons prior to this.
  • Premier League teams have progressed from 45 of their 47 FA Cup ties against non-league teams (96%), with only Norwich vs Luton in 2013 and Burnley vs Lincoln in 2017 failing to progress.
  • Separated by 120 years and 362 days, Chorley have lost both of their FA Cup games against top-flight opponents, losing against Notts County in January 1900 and Wolves.
  • Vitinha became the 32nd different Wolves player to score a goal for Nuno Espirito Santo in all competitions and the 11th different Portuguese player to do so, with what was his third shot in his 12th appearance.
  • Since the start of 2017-18, Wolves have had 11 different Portuguese scorers – more than twice as many as any other English league team in that time (Nottingham Forest, five).

What’s next?

Wolves are next in action against Chelsea in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday, 27 January (18:00 GMT).

Line-ups

Chorley

Formation 5-3-2

  • 1Urwin
  • 2BirchBooked at 86mins
  • 4Halls
  • 5Leather
  • 6BainesSubstituted forMillerat 84′minutes
  • 13ShentonSubstituted forHenleyat 84′minutes
  • 8Calveley
  • 12TomlinsonBooked at 36mins
  • 11Newby
  • 27HallSubstituted forSmithat 87′minutes
  • 9CardwellBooked at 89mins

Substitutes

  • 3Smith
  • 7Miller
  • 14Henley
  • 15Putnam
  • 16Garratt
  • 17Malakai
  • 19Roberts
  • 21Dutton
  • 25Birchall

Wolves

Formation 3-4-1-2

  • 21Ruddy
  • 15Boly
  • 16CoadyBooked at 63mins
  • 49Kilman
  • 2Hoever
  • 32Dendoncker
  • 28João MoutinhoSubstituted forNevesat 68′minutes
  • 3Aït-Nouri
  • 20VitinhaSubstituted forTraoréat 69′minutes
  • 17Fábio Silva
  • 23CutroneSubstituted forNetoat 68′minutes

Substitutes

  • 7Neto
  • 8Neves
  • 11Rui Patrício
  • 22Nélson Semedo
  • 37Traoré
  • 42Richards
  • 54Otasowie
  • 57Lonwijk
  • 60Corbeanu

Live Text

  • You can stream five fourth-round games live on the BBC this weekend, including Liverpool’s trip to Manchester United. Find out more here.

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