Ninth-placed Brentford will look to return to winning ways when they hit the road to square up against 13th-placed Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Wolverhampton Wanderers are all set to host Brentford, who are currently ninth in the Premier League. The visitors still have an outside chance of finishing in the top six despite their recent struggles. They are winless in their last four league games, and securing all three points in their next outing against Wolves is a must if they want to stay in the race for European competition.
On the other hand, Wolverhampton Wanderers, who are currently 13th in the league, will hope to extend their four-point lead over 18th-placed Nottingham Forest. Wolves are well aware of the fact that a few negative results can bring them close to relegation and will give it their best to claim all points against the Bees.
Wolves midfielder Matheus Nunes scored a stunning goal to defeat Chelsea last week. But the team’s inconsistency remains a concern. They have been following a pattern of winning and losing one game at Molineux post the World Cup.
However, they have been formidable at home, defeating West Ham United, Chelsea, and Tottenham Hotspur this season. They will hope to continue this trend when they face Brentford. Wolves will look to maintain their four-point lead over the relegation zone.
As far as Brentford are concerned, they suffered a disappointing loss to Newcastle United in their last game, extending their winless run in the Premier League to four games. They have conceded in all but one of their last nine matches.
Brentford’s away form has been mediocre, with just three Premier League away wins and only one win in their last six away matches. They will hope to improve their fortunes when they visit the Molineux.
Wolverhampton Wanderers and Brentford have squared up against each other thrice in the Premier League, with one win for each team. The reverse fixture between the two teams earlier this season ended as a 1-1 draw. Both teams are evenly matched despite the difference in their rankings. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at this fixture and tries to predict the tactics they could use.
Team News & Tactics
Julen Lopetegui will be without the services of suspended pair of Ruben Neves and Jonny Castro along with Sasa Kalajdzic and Chiquinho, who are out injured. And, Boubacar Traore is still a doubt for this outing.
— Wolves (@Wolves) April 14, 2023
Matheus Nunes, who scored the winner for Wolves against Chelsea, limped off in the last minutes of the game. While it looked like a major blow, the Portuguese international was seen walking around unaided and could be available for this match.
The Spanish manager is expected to start with the 4-4-2 formation, where Jose Sa will start in goal. Nelson Semedo and Toti Gomes could start in the full-back roles. Meanwhile, Craig Dawson and Max Kilman will form the central defensive partnership.
Daniel Podence and Matheus Nunes could start out wide in the centre of the park. Joao Gomes could pair up with Mario Lemina in the central midfield role. The duo will look to dictate the pace of the game and dominate the ball. As far as the attack is concerned, Matheus Cunha will pair up with the dangerous Diego Costa up front.
Probable Lineup (4-4-2): Sa; Semedo, Kilman, Dawson, Toti; Podence, Gomes, Lemina, Nunes; Cunha, Costa
The visitors will be without the services of Kristoffer Ajer, Keane Lewis-Potter, and Pontus Jansson. Meanwhile, Frank Onyeka could return into the thick of things.
Our last visit to Molineux gave us our first ever away #PL win 👊#WOLBRE pic.twitter.com/Wr8fbppaTQ
— Brentford FC (@BrentfordFC) April 14, 2023
While Thomas Frank prefers playing with a back three, he might go ahead with a back four in the absence of Jansson. Frank could start with the 4-3-3 formation, where David Raya will be in goal. Aaron Hickey and Rico Henry are expected to start out wide as the full-backs, while Ben Mee and Ethan Pinnock could pair up in the heart of the defence.
Vitaly Janelt, Christian Norgaard and Mathias Jensen will form the midfield three. They will be responsible to control the pace of the game and will look to not allow Wolves midfielder’s too much time on goal.
Ivan Toney will be leading the attack while Yoane Wissa and Bryan Mbeumo will start out wide as the wingers. They will look to cut inside and supply the dangerous Toney.
Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Raya; Hickey, Mee, Pinnock, Henry; Jensen, Norgaard, Janelt; Mbeumo, Toney, Wissa
- Brentford have one win out of their last seven league matches against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
- The reverse fixture earlier in the season ended in a 1-1 draw. The two teams have never shared two draws in the same league season.
- Wolves have won four out of their last six Premier League home games.
- Brentford are winless in their last four league games.
- Wolves under Julen Lopetegui are yet to lose a Premier League game in which they’ve taken the lead. They’ve won six and drawn two of those eight games.
Player to Watch
Only Harry Kane and Erling Haaland have scored more Premier League goals than Ivan Toney in the ongoing season. The England international has scored 18 league goals in his 28 outings and also has four assists to his name.
Toney has been a key figure in the Brentford squad in the ongoing season and their manager Thomas Frank will once again bank on the 27-year-old striker to get the job done for him.
Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-1 Brentford
On paper, the match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Brentford looks like it could be a closely fought encounter. The home team will be hoping to build on their recent win over Chelsea and maintain their solid home form. They have a number of talented players who are capable of causing problems for Brentford’s defence.
But they will need to be more consistent if they are to secure a win. Brentford, on the other hand, will be looking to bounce back from their recent defeats and improve their away form. The team will be aware of the home team’s strong record at Molineux and will need to be defensively solid if they are to get a result. The Hard Tackle predicts a 1-1 draw in this fixture between the two teams.
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