Matt Doherty on target as Wolves tear Pyunik to pieces
Raul Jimenez’s double and late penalty from Ruben Neves secures big away win
Matt Doherty scores Wolves’ opening goal in the Europa League third qualifying round, first leg against FC Pyunik at Pyunik Stadium in Yerevan, Armenia. Photograph: Sam Bagnall/AMA/Getty Images
Pyunik 0 Wolves 4
Matt Doherty bagged the opening goal as Wolves moved a step closer to the Europa League group stages with a comprehensive 4-0 win in the qualifying third round first leg against Pyunik.
A double from Raul Jimenez and Ruben Neves’s late penalty made it an easy evening in Armenia for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side, who start their Premier League campaign on Sunday.
They will look to complete the job next Thursday in the second leg at Molineux and move into a playoff against Torino or Shakhtyor.
A 6,370-mile round-trip was not ideal for Wolves, but Doherty’s 29th-minute goal provided a nice tonic.
The Ireland defender was played in by Joao Moutinho and, in yards of space, he rolled home a cool finish into the far corner.
Diogo Jota missed the opportunity to make it two, but Jimenez made no mistake shortly before the break.
Jota made amends for his earlier miss by slipping the Mexican striker in and he produced an emphatic finish into the roof of the net.
The match, and probably the tie, was then made safe less than a minute after the restart.
Jota again was the provider, slipping in Jimenez who made no mistake when through one-on-one.
Jimenez’s chance to take the match ball home was denied by a header cleared off the line, but Wolves could not be prevented from scoring a fourth late on.
Neves made no mistake from the spot after Patrick Crutone was felled in stoppage time.