Blackburn Under-23s 1 (Chapman 58) Wolves Under-23s 2 (Shabani 51, Perry 90)
Wolves Under-23s earned their first win of their Premier League 2 Division 1 campaign after a incident-packed second half away to Blackburn on Friday that saw the hosts reduced to nine men.
Taylor Perry’s excellent curling effort won it for Rob Edwards’s side in the last minute after Meritan Shabani’s first goal for Wolves against a Blackburn side who had Matty Platt and Charley Doyle sent off at Leyland.
Edwards made one change from the side which drew 0-0 with Everton last Sunday, with centre back Lewis Richards replacing Dion Sanderson, who is suffering with an illness.
In an entertaining first-half which saw chances at both ends, Benny Ashley-Seal went closest when he fired wide after creating space for himself on the edge of the box, while Dominic Samuel was inches away with a shot that whizzed just past the post.
Left wing back John Kitolano then fired well off target, before Shabani was inches away with a snapshot from inside the area after Oscar Buur crossed.
Wolves keeper Andreas Sondergaard held Joe Grayson’s long range free kick, but Rovers went closest so far when left back Lewis Thompson surged at the defence before arrowing a cross shot wide that just evaded Stefan Mols at the far post.
Wolves went ahead six minutes after the break when Shabani reacted quickest to Kitolano’s centre and lifted the ball over goalkeeper Joe Hilton as he dashed off his line.
But the lead lasted just seven minutes as Rovers equalised. Striker Harry Chapman was unmarked as he diverted Jack Doyle’s whipped-in cross beyond the outstretched arms of Sondergaard and into the bottom corner of the net.
Blackburn were down to 10 men on the hour when Platt was shown a red card for a ruthless challenge on Kitolano in midfield which left the wing back grounded.
Less than ten minutes later Blackburn were dealt a further blow with a second sending off, leaving them to play the final 23 minutes with nine men. Doyle tried to stop Kitolano from taking a quick throw-in and referee David Richardson showed a second yellow to the player who was already on a booking after a heavy tackle in the first-half on Perry.
With such a numerical advantage, the rest of the game was played in Rovers’ half.
Lewis Richards’s goalbound strike was blocked by Sam Hart, before Tom White got in the way of a shot from Elliot Watt, who then sliced over with two minutes left.
Wolves finally produced the winner when Perry curled a superb effort into the top corner of the net to give Hilton no chance.
Rovers: Hilton, Doyle, Thompson, White, Platt (c), Grayson, Mols, Lyons, Samuel (Brennan, 46 (Barnes, 68), Chapman (Annesley, 82), Hart.
Unused substitutes: Eastham, Jackson.
Goal: Chapman, 58
Booked: Doyle, 32, 67, Mols, 90
Sent off: Platt, 60, Doyle, 67.
Wolves: Sondergaard; Nya (Cristovao, 56), Francis, Richards; Buur (Thompson, 77), Perry, Watt, Jordao (Diallo, 46), Kitolano; Shabani, Ashley-Seal.
Unused substitutes: Dai, Samuels.
Goal: Shabani, 51
Booked: Nya, 16, Perry, 71, Richards, 90.