Wolves 0-1 Bournemouth: Attwell at the heart of the action once more

News Desk
Wolves and Bournemouth players surround referee Stuart Attwell
Stuart Attwell in the thick of it again

Referee Stuart Attwell was embroiled in further controversy after contentiously disallowing a Wolves goal in Bournemouth’s 1-0 win at Molineux.

Attwell was already in the spotlight for his role as VAR in denying Nottingham Forest three penalty appeals in Sunday’s 2-0 defeat at Everton, which led Forest to insinuate bias as he supports relegation rivals Luton.

And controversy followed him around after he adjudged Matheus Cunha to have fouled Justin Kluivert in an off-the-ball incident in the build up to Hee Chan Hwang’s second-half equaliser, which looked to have cancelled out Antoine Semenyo’s opener.

It was not spotted in real time but Attwell opted to give the foul following advice from VAR Darren England to watch it again on the pitchside monitor.

Attwell remained in the thick of the action as he then showed a straight red card to Bournemouth defender Milos Kerkez for a foul on Matt Doherty in a decision which survived another VAR check.

The controversy meant Semenyo’s first-half goal for the Cherries proved enough for a record-equalling sixth Premier League away win of the season.

They moved to within two points of registering their highest Premier League points tally, currently sitting on 45, one shy of their current record set in 2016/17.

For Wolves, this was a seventh game without a win in all competitions as they limped towards the finish line amid a chronic injury list.

Bournemouth were a threat from the off and were only denied in the opening half-hour by the heroics of Wolves goalkeeper Jose Sa, who made three big saves.

First he pushed away Semenyo’s early deflected effort and then had to claw away Kerkez’s shot after Kluivert had cleverly stepped over the ball.

It was Kluivert who was denied with the best save of the three, Sa superbly parrying his shot after he had capitalised on Nelson Semedo’s mistake.

The Cherries’ deserved opener came in the 36th minute as Max Kilman failed to clear Kerkez’s cross and Semenyo pounced to drill home from close range.

Wolves came out after the break with more intent but it was Bournemouth who were creating the chances.

Sa made another fine save to deny Kluivert after he stuck out a foot at Marcos Senesi’s wayward shot and then Semenyo’s effort was deflected just wide.

Wolves thought they had equalised in the 65th minute when Hwang powerfully headed home Semedo’s cross, but celebrations were short-lived as Attwell chose to penalise an innocuous looking tangle.

Attwell brandished the red card in the 79th minute after Kerkez went through Doherty and VAR upheld the decision.

Gary O’Neil’s men showed bluster in their attempt to get back into the game, with Kilman’s goal in the 10th minute of time added on ruled out for a marginal offside.