If Nuno Santo had a headache over the festive period it’s likely it won’t have been from excessive drinking. Instead, it will have been from repeatedly banging his head against a wall.
For Wolves, they can’t seem to string two positive results together at the moment and despite how impressive their performance was against Manchester United, they still lost.
Nuno’s men held on for so long but in the 93rd minute, Marcus Rashford’s deflected effort found its way past Rui Patricio and into the back of the net.
At first glance, Wolves’ decision to ring the chances wasn’t the best of ideas. Against a United side who are gunning for the title, it looked foolish. The number of changes wasn’t exactly Mick McCarthy levels but in starting Vitinha and Ki-Jana Hoever, it was a gamble.
It was one that so nearly paid off though as Wolves’ youngsters did themselves no harm. Although those two individuals didn’t look out of place, it was the performance of Max Kilman that shouldn’t go unnoticed.
The 23-year-old was poor against Burnley and was caught out of position on a regular basis. However, he made up for it with a resounding display at Old Trafford.
Kilman has been inconsistent this season and now has to build on this outing, one that saw him win 83.3% of the duels he contested. He was a titan in ground battles, winning four out of five against a free-flowing attack full of world-class talent.
The young defender held his own and in the words of Birmingham Live correspondent Alex Dicken, he “handled everything.”
To add to Kilman’s eye-catching performance, he completed 81% of his passes and provided plenty of cover for Rayan Ait-Nouri. The left wing-back was allowed the freedom to bomb forward because of how well his teammate was defending.
Although he conceded late on, the centre-back deserves enormous credit for the way he went about his business, especially after looking out of place against the Clarets.
The challenge for Kilman now is finding that sort of level on a regular basis.