LONDON (Reuters) - A wonder goal from Ruben Neves helped power Championship leaders Wolverhampton Wanderers to a 2-0 victory over Derby County at Molineux on Wednesday that pushes them to the brink of earning Premier League football next season.
The Portuguese international Neves scored an astonishing dipping 51st minute volley from 30 metres out to seal the win that puts Wolves 11 points clear at the top of England’s second-tier standings.
Diogo Jota, another of Wolves’ Portuguese contingent, had struck after six minutes to launch the leaders towards a win that leaves them two points from sealing promotion, mathematically, to the Premier League after a six-year absence.
They could seal top flight football by beating their Midlands rivals Birmingham City on Sunday at their Molineux fortress.
Yet if second-placed Fulham fail to beat Brentford at home on Saturday, Wolves could even be celebrating promotion 24 hours before that match.
Nuno Santo’s entertaining Wolves side have enjoyed a special season but their fans had seen nothing to top the strike from Neves, who controlled a Derby clearance, flicked up the ball and unleashed an unstoppable volley.
The win moved Wolves on to 92 points from 42 games, 11 clear of Fulham, who currently hold the other automatic promotion place by a point from Cardiff City, who have a game in hand.
Derby’s own promotion push was dented as they stand fifth among the playoff places on 68 points.
Reporting by Ian Chadband; Editing by Toby Davis