The latter stages of the season were fast-approaching for Wolverhampton Wanderers and Pierre Pellegri. Th club was still chasing glory in the FA Cup and UEFA Europa League bu their league form continued to suffer from a split focus. Could Wolves arrest the slide or would they continue to drop down the table? It was their penultimate month to do so.
Wolves confirmed the future transfer of Sergiño Dest from Dutch giants Ajax. The teenage wing back, born in Almere, joined Ajax's academy back in 2012 and played 17 times for Jong Ajax last season. He has been a regular for the senior side this system and was capped by the United States for the first time this season, by virtue of his father being American.
Dest will cost Wolves an initial fee of £10.5M and, if he plays 50 league games for the club, an additional £1M. Pellegri considered the fee to be a bargain for the wonderkid wing back who was in high demand. With Matt Doherty expected to leave the club in the summer, and Adama Traoré also drawing in plenty of interest, Dest could find himself playing plenty of football in orange and black next season.
Wolves' Premier League struggles continued against Arsenal. The Gunners were in superior form at the Emirates and walked away as 2-1 winners. The result reinvigorated Wolves who won their first league game since 8th February as they recorded a 2-0 win over Norwich. This was followed up with a thrilling, yet frustrating, 3-3 draw against Brighton before finishing the month of Premier League football with a truly dominant 6-1 win over Aston Villa, with Jota scoring a hat trick.
There was just one FA Cup game for Wolves in April, but it was a big one. Pellegri's players played out a semi final at Wembley against Burnley. Wolves were superior and a brace from Jota inspired the midlands club to a 3-1 win and a place in the final where they will face Manchester City.
UEFA Europa League:
Despite Wolves' resurgent league form and a successful FA Cup semi final clash, it was the UEFA Europa League which captured the attention of their fans. Borussia Mönchengladbach were familiar opponents for Wolves, but Wolves came out on top of the quarter final clash. Wolves won the first leg at the Molineux by a rampant 4-0 scoreline. Gladbach hit back with a 3-1 win in the second leg but it wasn't enough to deny Wolves a semi final place.
Pellegri got his dream opponent in the semi final - Olympique Lyonnais. Pellegri's 218 goals as a player for Lyon made him the top scorer in the club's history, and the semi final offered an opportunity to compete against his boyhood club. However, a trip to France would have to wait until May as Wolves hosted the first leg at the end of April. Jonny stole the show with a marvelous brace and Jota also got in on the act as Wolves recorded a surprise 3-0 win, putting them in the ascendancy. The club knew an away goal in the second leg would all but guarantee them a place in the final.
Wolves' return to form saw them climb back to 11th in the league. However, with just four games to go, Wolves knew that anything above 10th place was almost certainly out of their reach. While the club would aim as high as possible, they were resigned to a mid-table finish - an improvement from where they were six months ago.
Jota's form in front of goal was given plenty of credit and he picked up the Premier League Player of the Month award - the first time a Wolves player won such an award this season. He was Wolves' star player and much of their hopes for FA Cup and Europa League success rested on his young shoulders.
Wolves' final four league games of the season were to be tough. Trips to Newcastle United and Leicester City were on either side of their final home game of the season against Watford. Their final Premier League fixture of the season was away to Tottenham Hotspur. If Wolves were to claim a top half finish, they would need to overcome some tough opponents.
The big one. Wolves had played incredibly well under Pierre Pellegri to earn a place in this season's FA Cup final. It was fitting that Manchester City and Pep Guardiola, in particular, would be their opponents. Who would come out on top - the giants of English football or a team known for finding something special on the big occasion under Pellegri?
UEFA Europa League:
Wolves were in control of their Europa League semi final tie against Lyon. A 3-0 home win in the first leg meant they had plenty to hold on to in the second leg. The second leg was set to be an emotional game for Pellegri, who would compete against his beloved childhood club in his home country. There was plenty on the line, with a place in the final (against either Arsenal or Atalanta) up for grabs.
, yes sir!
, we'll see
, not sure about that one, don't think the fans would be too happy!
, would be lovely to rub Pep's nose in it!
, that's the dream!
, we hope