The first half was everything I feared. The second was everything I hoped.
Call me an optimist, but I’m choosing hope.
In the 15 minutes or so we were on top, we were well on top and enough chances were created to win the game, let alone fight back into contention.
Podence was suddenly a threat, Neto was skinning his full-back and Traore remembered he’s unplayable – at least as far as Mendy’s concerned.
And Raul, of course, did what Raul always does – albeit at the second time of asking.
Yes, there was enough there to make me believe the next cycle can be every bit as glorious as everything we’ve experienced up to now.
They’ve just got to ride the storm better.
After all, we can’t forget that for 45 excruciating minutes, we were punished by a relentless City press and for an inability to hold the ball.
The passes weren’t on and with white shirts closing the panic was palpable, culminating in a crazy lunge on De Bruyne by the otherwise dependable Saiss.
Good teams force those errors but that one felt avoidable.
The same could be said of the second goal from a lazy turnover of possession by Traore, which was gleefully ping-ponged around for Foden to stroke into an empty net.
‘Damage limitation’ was my half time assessment, so certain was I that more pain was to come.
That opinion didn’t change in the early knockings of the second period either with Wolves still chasing shadows and winning none of the second balls.
But then, out of almost nothing, the worm began to turn and it was shots in against Ederson.
Podence (twice), Neves and Jimenez were all guilty of failure to even test the keeper from very presentable openings before Raul eventually did the business.
But it’s the creation of those chances that should give heart.
With Diogo and Doherty gone, we need more angles of attack and all three of those wide players look capable of producing the goods.
If Semedo is imminent as reports suggest, it means Traore can play where he’s at his most effective and our defensive prospects should also get a shot in the arm.
It was a slightly shoddy performance when viewed overall, a kind of work-in-progress outing that will never get the job done against City.
But at least it showed again that there is something to work with and enough to have a considerable amount of hope.