LONDON: Junior Hoilett scored late on to earn Cardiff a come-from-behind 2-1 win over Wolves in the Premier League on Friday to lift Neil Warnock’s team out of the relegation zone.
For Warnock, this was the perfect present on the eve of his 70th birthday after Aron Gunnarsson cancelled out Matt Doherty’s opener for Wolves.
In the 18th minute Raul Jimenez rose highest at a corner to glance a header on target and Doherty was on hand to slot home with his left foot after a fine save from Cardiff keeper Neil Etheridge.
Doherty’s goal was the difference between the two sides at the break. Ruben Neves curled an effort just wide shortly before the break, before Cardiff had penalty appeals waved away after Callu Paterson went down in the area.
Cardiff equalised shortly after the hour mark.
Harry Arter lifted the ball back into the area and Wolves keeper Rui Patricio found his path to the ball blocked, allowing Sean Morrison to flick on for Gunnarsson who lashed home from close range.
Warnock’s side turned the game on its head with a stunning strike from Hoilett. The ball broke to the Canadian on the left edge of the area and he curled a first-time shot into the far corner.
Cardiff held on to seal a victory that lifted them up to 15th ahead of Saturday’s fixtures.
Defeat extended Wolves’ winless run to six league matches, stretching back to their 1-0 victory at Crystal Palace on October 6.
Cardiff midfielder Gunnarsson was delighted his side were able to deliver an early birthday present for boss Warnock.
“That’s for the gaffer, it’s his birthday tomorrow,” said the Iceland international.
“First half wasn’t good enough, second half we came out fighting and I think we deserved those three points.
“We came out (after half-time) on the front foot. We fought a little bit harder for each other and really wanted the three points.”