Wolves secured back-to-back Premier League wins for the first time since October as Illan Meslier’s unfortunate own goal secured a 1-0 victory over Leeds at Molineux.
Meslier had denied the hosts on several occasions during a vibrant opening half but he was left helpless when Adama Traore’s long-range shot thundered off the crossbar and hit his back to rebound into the net (64).
Patrick Bamford thought he had levelled matters when he converted from Tyler Roberts’ pass but he was denied by the offside flag before Rui Patricio was drawn into action in stoppage time to thwart Helder Costa.
The result moves Wolves above Leeds in the Premier League table as Nuno Espirito Santo’s side rise to 11th ahead of the weekend’s remaining fixtures.
Leeds went into Friday’s game needing just one win to reach the landmark figure of 200 in the Premier League and Mateusz Klich hit the post after 27 minutes with Pascal Struijk seeing his follow-up effort saved by Patricio.
But Wolves looked the more dangerous, and in Pedro Neto they had the game’s most adventurous player.
The 20-year-old forced Meslier into a fine one-handed save from distance – one of four first-half attempts – while the Leeds goalkeeper was also tested twice by Nelson Semedo but neither side could find the breakthrough before the break.
Tyler Roberts replaced Ezgjan Alioski in Leeds’ only change for their trip to Wolves. Alioski dropped to the bench following the 4-2 defeat at Arsenal on Sunday.
Wolves were unchanged from their 2-1 win at Southampton last weekend as Willian Jose continued to lead the line.
The second period was one of immense frustration for Leeds, who fell on the wrong side of fine margins to be consigned to a 12th league defeat of the campaign.
But first came Wolves’ 11th attempt of the night as Neto selfishly went for goal himself despite having Willian Jose in support but he failed to trouble Meslier from a tight angle.
Then a period of 90 seconds that would decide the contest. Leeds came within a whisker of breaking the deadlock when Cooper rose once more to meet another devilish Raphinha free-kick but the centre-back could only head straight at Patricio before Conor Coady was in the right place to clear Bamford’s rebound.
Wolves strode down the other end as Traore stepped inside Luke Ayling, spun away from Pascal Struijk, and unleashed a venomous drive that crashed off the crossbar, rebounded off the fallen Meslier and dropped over the line, becoming the youngest goalkeeper to score an own goal in Premier League history.
It was harsh on Leeds, and Wolves would lead a charmed life in the final 20 minutes. It was the same combination that had threatened all evening that nearly wiped out the moment of misfortune, but Cooper was again denied from close range by Patricio from Raphinha’s excellent cross.
Leeds knew it wasn’t going to be their night with 13 minutes remaining, however, when Bamford’s fine strike from Roberts’ pass was chalked off for a marginal offside call, with replays showing Coady’s back leg was fractionally in front of the Leeds striker’s body before his confident finish beyond Patricio.
Deep into stoppage time, there would still be one last chance for Bielsa’s side to salvage a point, but Patricio was again on hand to deny Costa as Wolves secured a league double over their opponents.