Even though Wolves are currently riding high at the top of the Championship table, few people expected them to give Manchester City a run for their money at the Etihad Stadium on Tuesday evening.
But Wolves exceeded expectations on the night, holding Pep Guardiola’s multi-million pound side to a 0-0 draw for 90 minutes of normal time plus an additional 30 minutes of extra-time.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s side were eventually beaten on penalties, with Alfred N’Diaye and Conor Coady missing for the visitors.
Rather than praise Wolves for their spirited performance, City boss Pep Guardiola blamed the ball - yes, the ball - for his team’s struggles.
“It is not acceptable, the ball was unacceptable for a high-level competition,” Guardiola was quoted as saying by the Guardian. “It is too light, it moves all over the place, it is not a good ball. It is impossible to score with a ball like that and I can say that because we won, I’m not making excuses. All of my players said: ‘What is that?’ I’m sorry Carabao Cup is not a serious ball for a serious competition. It’s [for] marketing, money, OK but it’s not acceptable – [it has] no weight, nothing.”
Guardiola has been criticised for his comments, with many people disappointed that he opted against showing Wolves any credit for their display.
Nuno’s side were excellent throughout the match and, on the evidence of this performance, clearly possess enough quality to secure promotion to the Premier League at the end of the campaign.
Left-back Ruben Vinagre, who only turned 18 in April, looked superb for his age.
Video: Walker gets roasted by Vinagre
There was one moment in extra-time when he roasted Kyle Walker, the man who became the most expensive defender ever after joining City from Spurs in a £53 million deal earlier this summer.
Check out that footwork…
Vinagre, a Portugal Under-19 international, is currently on loan at Molineux from AS Monaco.
And judging by this clip, he appears to have an incredibly bright future ahead of him.
Reaction to Vinagre's performance
Here’s how Twitter reacted to Vinagre’s performance…
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