Wolves’ Europa League dream came to a heartbreaking end as Sevilla booked a semi-final against Manchester United on Sunday with a late winner in Duisburg.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s side – whose pandemic-disrupted 2019-20 season lasted 383 days – had a glorious 13th-minute chance to take the lead but Raul Jimenez’s penalty was saved.
They struggled to create chances after that and failed to hold on for extra time as Lucas Ocampos’ header from Ever Banega’s cross settled the tie for Sevilla with two minutes to go.
Wolves will not be in European competition next season after finishing seventh in the Premier League.
Five-time winners Sevilla – who are unbeaten in 19 games in all competitions – will face Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United in Dusseldorf on Sunday. Inter Milan or Shakhtar Donetsk await the winners in the final.
Wolves finally run out of steam
The defeat will come as a huge disappointment to Wolves, who could struggle to hold on to some of their star players without any European football next year.
The season started on 25 July 2019 with a 2-0 qualifying home win over Crusaders in qualifying in front of 29,708 excited fans on their return to Europe after 39 years. And it ended after 59 games in an empty ground far away from home.
They looked exhausted after a quick start on a hot night in Duisburg.
Jimenez had a header saved after 37 seconds from Adama Traore’s cross and then had a poor penalty saved after Traore was fouled following a sensational surging run.
They had two reasons to be aggrieved. Goalkeeper Yassine Bounou appeared to be off his line and defender Diego Carlos entered the box before the kick was taken and headed the loose ball.
The video assistant referee did not spot either infringement.
Wolves did not manage a single shot on target in the 77 minutes following that and were hanging on for large portions with a solid defensive performance.
Sevilla managed 18 shots to Wolves’ six and the breakthrough finally came late on. Following a short corner Banega’s perfect cross found Ocampos, whose glancing header left Rui Patricio with no chance.
Man of the match – Ever Banega
Match stats – Jimenez’s 100% record comes to end
- Sevilla have reached the semi-finals of the Uefa Cup/Europa League for the seventh time – only Inter Milan have reached this stage on more occasions (eight).
- Wolves failed to score in the Europa League for the first time since their opening group game against Braga in September (1-0).
- Sevilla have won all three of their games English opposition at neutral venues, also beating Middlesbrough 4-0 in 2006 and Liverpool 3-1 in 2016.
- Raul Jimenez missed a penalty for Wolves for the first time, having scored each of the previous eight.
- Wolves defender Romain Saiss was shown his 14th yellow card of the season, making him the most yellow-carded Premier League player in 2019-20.
For more updates on this story, see bbc.com.