Steven Fletcher grabbed the hosts a late equaliser as Wolves and Tottenham shared an action-packed six-goal thriller at Molineux on Sunday.
The substitute headed home in the 87th minute just when it seemed two highly controversial refereeing decisions would deprive the strugglers of a share of the spoils after Roman Pavlyuchenko and a Jermain Defoe double had canceled out Kevin Doyle’s brace for Wanderers.
Prior to kick-off, both sets of supporters honoured former Wolves and Spurs defender Dean Richards with one minute’s applause, as representatives of each of Richards’ former clubs joined his family and the players out on the pitch to celebrate the 36-year-old, who died last week.
And the 90 minutes that followed would have delighted the talented England Under-21 international as both sides set out with the sole intention of claiming a vital win.
Wolves’ wing play set out to expose Heurelho Gomes’ vulnerability at claiming crosses, and sure enough, on 20 minutes, Spurs fell behind to just such a move as Doyle found a yard of space between the Tottenham goalkeeper and his defence to flick home Nenad Milijas’ pinpoint cross from the right.
Tottenham showed their class by weathering the storm to hit back with two pieces of clinical finishing from Defoe.
First, the England striker curled a sumptuous shot beyond a full-stretched Wayne Hennessey to level matters and bettered it soon after with a top corner finish from 25 yards out.
That lead evaporated within five minutes as Doyle sent Gomes the wrong way with a penalty after Alan Hutton had tugged the arm of Milijas in the area.
With many debating whether Hutton’s yellow card warranted more severe punishment, Spurs made Wolves pay by regaining the lead just three minutes after the restart as some hesitant defending allowed Pavlyuchenko time to slam home another impressive long-range finish.
Milijas and Defoe both hit the woodwork in an absorbing finale that saw Richard Stearman’s header controversially ruled out for an apparent foul on Gomes before Fletcher climbed highest to claim the draw that both teams had earned.