If you’re going to lose to a great side, there are worse ways to do it but few this painful.
Wolves kicked and headed and scratched and rode their luck and ran the clock down and slowed the game and blocked on the line and did everything else you can possibly do to take something from a contest in which they were clearly second best.
In our defensive organisation and commitment to the cause, you can’t fault anyone in a gold shirt.
The wingbacks in particular, who I’ve long considered weak links out of possession were both star performers. Semedo kept Mane quiet and Ait-Nouri was Man of the Match down the other side prior to going off with cramp.
I did wonder when Hoever came on for those final seconds whether that change would prove costly and unfortunately for Wolves that’s exactly how it played out.
First he marched forward with the ball and inexplicably surrendered possession and then moments later was hesitant against Salah who played the decisive ball in for Origi.
Harsh, but those are the margins you’re talking about with this level of opposition.
If there’s a disappointment, other than losing with the last kick of the game, it’s how little we offered as an attacking force.
Of course it was nigh on impossible to break that Liverpool press but I did think there were many instances where better decisions could have got us into dangerous positions.
But I suppose that’s what this Liverpool team do; smother the ball to the extent you feel a tackle is coming even when it’s not.
You have to tip your hat to how they move around the pitch as a unit. As good as they are with the ball, they’re just as devestatingly efficient without it.
It takes a player like Traore to unsettle them and he was our only real pathway up the pitch, but when he did get moving there simply wasn’t anything happening around him.
Hwang and Raul didn’t do enough, even allowing for the difficulty of the challenge.
Going back to the opposite end of the pitch, I thought Sa was excellent.
Yes, there was that horrible moment when he charged into Saiss allowing Jota to run in for what should have been a goal, but his judgement around that mistake was pretty much flawless. He’s going to make those types of errors because of his high starting position and sweeper keeper directives, but considering how much he was involved I thought this performance enhanced an increasingly strong reputation.
Bruno Lage will be happy with him and content with what he got from his team. I don’t think he could extract more from the group.
And when the dust has settled and the pain subsided a bit, he can reflect on pushing Liverpool’s best team to their absolute limit and that is at least something worth salvaging.