Hwang Hee-chan (27-Wolverhampton) produced another attacking point against Liverpool, but unfortunately the team was unable to defend his opener and conceded three goals in the loss.
Wolverhampton fell 1-3 to Liverpool in the fifth round of the 2023-24 Premier League (PL) season at Molineux Stadium in Wolverhampton, England, on Saturday at 8:30 p.m. ET. With the loss, their second straight, Wolverhampton remain in 15th place with a record of 1-4-1 (3 points). Liverpool, who picked up three points away from home, sit in third place with four wins and a draw (13 points).
Hwang’s early form this season has been very good. Prior to the Liverpool game, he scored two goals, one each against Brighton and Palace. First, in the 16th minute of the second half against Brighton, Hwang headed home Pablo Sarabia’s corner kick, finding the back of the far post. Then, in the 20th minute of the second half at Palace, a free kick was awarded from the side and Pedro Neto sent it into the box. The ball deflected off the shoulder of Hwang Hee-chan and into the right corner for the equalizer. Coincidentally, both goals came after substitutions.
After the opening match against Manchester United, Birmingham Live wrote: “After Hwang came on as a substitute, Matheus Nunes moved to the center. Hwang took his place on the left flank. He was ambitious and tried to score a goal.”
After the second round match against Brighton, ‘Birmingham Live’ wrote: “Sarabia found Hwang Hee-chan and sent in a cross for Hwang Hee-chan to score. Hwang’s header may not have been powerful, but it was enough to beat the Brighton goalkeeper.” Furthermore, ‘Molineux News’ said, “Hwang Hee-chan was the only positive player in the Brighton game. He deserves to start against Everton. He was a threat at United when the other strikers couldn’t finish, and he worked hard to create something against Brighton, even scoring a header.”
And so it continued, with a favorable review against Liverpool. “Hwang calmly finished his third goal of the season,” said Birmingham Live. The versatile striker, who started on the right flank, was industrious and clever.”
It’s certainly a standout performance in contrast to the team’s situation. Through the fourth round of the PL, Wolverhampton had lost 0-1 to Manchester United, 1-4 to Brighton, 1-0 to Everton, and 2-3 to Crystal Palace. This left them in 15th place with one win and three losses. The summer transfer window saw the departure of key players and a lack of reinforcements, with head coach Julen Lopetegui relieved of his duties, and the repercussions have been felt.
‘Ace’ Hwang Hee-chan has been named as the starter. Wolverhampton lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation. Mateusz Cunha was up front, Pedro Neto, Jean-Luc Belgaard, and Hwang formed the second line, while Joao Gomes and Mario Lemina held down the middle. Rayan Aitkenuri, Maximilian Kilman, Craig Dawson, and Nelson Semedo formed the back four, with Issa donning the goalkeeping gloves.
Opponents Liverpool lined up in a 4-3-3 formation. Diogo Jota, Cody Gakpo, and Mohamed Salah lined up in the front three, with Curtis Jones, Alexis McAllister, and Dominic Sobocler in the midfield. Andy Robertson, Joel Matip, Jarel Kwansa, and Joe Gomez formed the defense, with Alisson Becker in goal.
Hwang Hee-chan opened the scoring in the seventh minute. Neto drove the ball up from the Wolverhampton half and, surrounded by three men in front of the penalty box, dribbled inside. He then sent a grounded cross to the other side, where Hwang Hee-chan pushed it towards goal. Alisson threw himself at it, but it crossed the line and was recognized as a goal. It was Hwang’s third league goal of the season.
However, Wolverhampton were brought to their knees as they conceded three goals. Goals from Gakpo in the 10th minute, Robertson in the 40th minute and an own goal from Hugo Bueno in the first minute of stoppage time sealed the defeat.