Good afternoon and welcome to coverage of Liverpool’s visit to Molineux. Wolves start the day in 15th after a victory over Everton at Goodison and three defeats but they are not without hope. Liverpool, with 10 points from their four games, were beaten 3-0 by Julen Lopetegui’s side last February and Gary O’Neil, Wanderers’ new manager, led Bournemouth to a 1-0 victory over the Red Men at Dean Court last spring, a result which exemplified their recovery under him since the 9-0 mauling at Anfield overseen by Scott ‘Scottie’ Parker.
And yet Liverpool looked so comfortable during their 3-0 victory over a well-regarded Villa side last time out and played with such clinical intelligence to come back with 10-men to beat Newcastle at St James’ Park that it is little wonder they are such strong favourites to win. Everyone has reported fit after international duty and, though Virgil van Dijk is serving an additional one-match suspension for initially refusing to depart when sent off at Newcastle and sits out today, only Thiago of the pre-break casualty list is without hope of turning out today. Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ibrahim Konaté are nearing full fitness and may play some part.
Wolves have everyone bar young Joseph Hodge available but his fellow Man City Academy alumnus, Tommy Doyle, grandson of Mike Doyle and also for George Best’s victim Glyn Pardoe, for those of this author’s age, should be in line to make his first start having joined on loan on deadline day. If you haven’t seen him play, Doyle is a throwback box-to-box midfielder, ‘an 8’ in current parlance, who could give Wolves a new dimension alongside Joao Gomes and Mario Lemina in midfield. His signing, and the fact they have been scoring even though they have not been winning, are the main reasons I think they will be all right this season, whatever happens today.
And what of Liverpool’s deadline day signing, Ryan Gravenberch? He has had two weeks at Liverpool, untroubled by a call-up, but has played only nine minutes of football this season making it mire likely that Jürgen Klopp will stick with a midfield trio of Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai and either Curtis Jones, Harvey Barnes or possibly even Stefan Bajcetic.