Diego Costa was sent off for a header late in Wolves’ 1-1 draw at Brentford, which leaves the visitors in the relegation zone.
After a torrid first half, the west London clash suddenly burst into life after the break as Ben Mee’s scissors kick put Brentford ahead in the 50th minute – but that lead lasted just two minutes.
Wolves captain Ruben Neves headed home from the edge of the box to equalize for the visitors, but instead of a late winner, the drama fell on Costa’s door for disciplinary reasons as his late header on Mee was picked up by VAR.
Referee Bobby Madley, who was officiating his first Premier League game in four years after being sacked due to his own disciplinary problems in 2018, waved the red card after looking at the monitor. Wolves interim manager Steve Davis revealed after the game that Costa had apologized for the red card and hinted that he could be fined.
When asked if Costa would face a financial penalty, Wolves interim head coach Steve Davis said: “I suppose so, yes – that’s on point.
“We’ll talk about that again next week – when emotions are high, it’s hard to talk about those things right away and it’s not the right time. Certainly, we will talk to him next week.
“We know what he is, he plays on the edge, and then there’s that player who stretches. It’s a shame.”
Brentford: Raya 6; Ajer 6, Mee 7, Pinnock 6, Henry 7; Jensen 5, Janelt 6, Dasilva 7; Mbeumo 6, Toney 5, Wissa 6
Subs: Damsgaard 6, Lewis-Potter 7, Onyeka (n/a), Roerslev (n/a), Canos (n/a)
Wolves: With 7; Semedo 5, Collins 8, Kilman 7, Bueno 6; Neves 7, Nunes 5, B. Traore 6; A. Traore 6, Kosta 4, Podence 7
Subs: Moutinho 6, Guedes (n/a)
Man of the Match: Nathan Collins (Wolves)
How the game turned out
Before the first half was marred by injuries, there was a nice feel to the end-to-end game as both sides – both goalless in recent weeks – looked for an early start.
Mathias Jensen fed the ball on the edge of the Brentford penalty area to Neves, who fed Daniel Podence in the area, but his shot was straight at David Ray when he should have done better.
Wolves, who went into the game as the lowest scorers in England’s top four divisions, soon went close again as Costa got on the end of a Podence cross at the near post but headed wide.
Brentford upped the tempo and missed two quick chances for Toney and Josh Dasilva. Toney dribbled wide after Bryan Mbeum’s deflection, before Dasilva curled a long-range shot from 25 yards just wide of Jose Sa’s far post.
But a promising start to the game slowly faded away as injuries hit both teams. First, Jensen was replaced by Mikkel Damsgaard after a recurring leg problem. Wolves brought in Joao Moutinho for Matheus Nunes, who picked up a shoulder problem after a collision with Yoane.
Newly introduced Moutinho saw a deflected effort fly wide – as did Nathan Collins and Podence – but the first half ended with both sides failing to register a shot on goal.
It ended in spectacular fashion after the break as Brentford started the half on the front foot – and got their just rewards.
After Mbeum’s header was well saved by Sa, a short corner fell to the Brentford striker who found Mee in the box.
The centre-back produced a sensational acrobatic effort to knock over Sa and send the home fans into jubilation.
But those cheers were soon marred when Adama Traore and Nelson Semedo combined down the right to feed Neves on the edge of the area, who slotted past Raya in what is becoming a trademark shot from distance to silence the home fans.
The visitors suddenly came on top after a poor start to the second period. Podence forced Raya into a save before Costa missed a good chance on the break by shooting straight at the Brentford keeper.
The swing of momentum then swung back to Brentford when Yoane Wissa headed wide when Mbeumo found him in a good area, before Nathan Collins’ last-ditch block deflected off Dasilva from the edge of the area.
In the last 10 minutes, the impressive Keane Lewis-Potter came off the bench to put Toney in the penalty area from a corner, but he could not divert his effort on goal.
Instead of winning time, stoppage time was dominated by Costa’s first red card in the Premier League for an offside header on Mee, which VAR assisted in awarding.
With Wolves still in the bottom three and Brentford five points above them, aggregate points are no match for either team as the tight bottom half of the table shows no signs of breaking away.
BrentfordThe next game is a trip to the newly promoted Nottingham Forest next Saturday, three days before the away game Gillingham in the third round of the Carabao Cup. The Bees complete their pre-World Cup rotation in the Premier League with a trip to the champions Manchester City November 12.
Wolves have three home games before the World Cup ends the season, hosted by Steve Davis Brighton, Leeds in the Carabao Cup and Arsenalthe latter continues live Sky Sports November 12 – starting at 7:45 p.m.