USMNT's Wright earns Coventry shock FA Cup win

Championship side Coventry City stunned Wolves 3-2 with two injury-time goals in their FA Cup quarterfinal on Saturday, as United States forward Haji Wright’s strike booked his side’s place in the semifinals for only the second time in the club’s history.

Wolves had looked set for a trip to Wembley after Rayan Aït-Nouri cancelled out Ellis Simms’ second-half opener and Hugo Bueno then put the home side ahead in the 88th minute.

– Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (U.S.)

But Simms grabbed a second in the seventh minute of injury time before teammate Wright scored the winner in the 10th minute of injury time, curling his shot into the corner to send the Coventry fans, team and staff wild with delight.

Simms’ double made him the first Coventry player to score five goals in a single FA Cup campaign since Keith Houchen in 1986-87. That was the season Coventry won the cup — the biggest trophy in the club’s 140-year history.

“A great occasion, the fans have been amazing and we’re just delighted. I’m so proud of the lads. We’ve dug in, and even at 2-1 down we never gave up,” Simms told ITV.

“It’s going to be a great occasion at Wembley. We want to go all the way. The next round will be tough against a top Premier League team but we will give it our all and go in with all guns blazing.”

Haji Wright’s late winning goal sent Coventry into the semifinals of the FA Cup for the first time since 1987.

Coventry took the lead in the 53rd minute from a free kick when Simms bundled the ball into the net, with the goal awarded after a lengthy VAR check for handball in the buildup.

Wolves, who were missing Pedro Neto, Hwang Hee-chan, Matheus Cunha and Jean-Ricner Bellegarde through injury, had offered very little threat until Ait-Nouri swept home in the 83rd minute when Coventry failed to clear a cross.

“Credit to the players and the fans, the players gave everything and Coventry met us on a day where we weren’t at full strength and they were able to capitalise on it. They deserved to win the game,” Wolves manager Gary O’Neil told the BBC.

“Losing in a quarterfinal is obviously a missed opportunity, we produced as good as we could produce. That was it, the lads gave everything.”

Five minutes after Aït-Nouri’s equaliser, substitute Bueno put Wolves in front with his first senior goal, seemingly ensuring his team’s safe passage to the semifinals.

But Simms grabbed a second at the far post to bring Coventry level before Wright sent their fans into delirium with the winner.

“There’s a lot of quality in our side and as long as we believe and keep trying, we can take our chances,” Wright said.

“It’s amazing to make it to Wembley and it will be good fun for all of us. Hopefully we can enjoy [today] and then get back to work.”

Coventry manager Mark Robins later apologised for celebrating his team’s winning goal by running to a Wolves ball boy and celebrating with clenched fists, saying the emotions of the dramatic finale got the better of him.

“I have an apology to make because before that [winning goal] happened, a ball boy had the ball in his hand,” Robins said.

“He dropped the ball and walked away, smiling. It really annoyed me. But he’s a kid. At the end of the day I’ve reacted. We scored the goal and I’ve gone and celebrated in front of him. So I’m apologising to him.

“I do not show emotion very often but I did today, and that’s what the FA Cup does to you.”

Wolves boss O’Neil said Robins had apologised to him as well but labelled the celebration “disgusting.”

Information from Reuters contributed to this report.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top