Everton are in trouble, make no mistake.
Three consecutive defeats. Key players out injured, others woefully out of form and an imposing fixture list. This could be a long winter.
A terrible first half was their undoing here, as goals from Max Kilman and Raul Jimenez put Wolves in front. They were much better after the break, with Alex Iwobi pulling one back, but the damage was already done.
Rafa Benitez rung the changes from the Watford debacle, with Richarlison returning to the starting line-up. Mason Holgate and Iwobi also returned, while there was a first Premier League start in over two years for the lesser-spotted Jean-Philippe Gbamin.
Everton began the game playing very compact, likely in response to that Hornets humbling last week, but Wolves were still able to cut through the midfield like ribbons.
It was like the last 15 minutes of the Watford game all over again. Wolves’ forwards were simply dropping off and finding acres of space.
It was pitifully easy.
The only positive in the early period was Jordan Pickford. After a weekend where the media did their best to highlight the claims of some of his rivals to his England No.1 shirt, Pickford showed why he is Gareth Southgate’s first choice with two superb stops to deny Ruben Neves and Trincao.
Wolves did find the back of the net after some more awful defending, but Hwang Hee-chan’s strike was ruled out for a marginal offside following a VAR check.
The reprieve didn’t last long. Kilman heading home his first Wolves goal (Everton That Part 1) from a corner. Everton have now conceded seven goals from set pieces this season, the same as the entirety of last campaign. It’s like the Marco Silva era all over again - why can’t they manage the basics?
Speaking not doing the basics, the second goal was even worse. Ben Godfrey playing a backpass blind that Jimenez was able to run onto and score - his first home goal since suffering that nasty fractured skull last year (Everton That part 2).
Dreadful, simply dreadful.
Godfrey has struggled badly this season, though his cause has not been helped by being shunted across the back four. He was at left-back this evening in the absence of Lucas Digne because of Everton’s failure to bring in a back-up over the summer.
Benitez switched to 4-5-1 and it belatedly tightened things up but it was too little, too late.
The Spaniard brought on Fabian Delph at the break for the ineffective Gbamin and the former England international was one of Everton’s better performers as they improved after the break (it couldn’t have got any worse).
Gray had a shot well blocked by Neves before Richarlison was denied by Jose Sa after the Wolves goalkeeper had seen his pass intercepted by the Brazilian.
They did get back into the game when Godfrey’s optimistic long-range shot fell into the path of Iwobi, who placed a first time shot into the corner.
Again, though, Wolves only had to play one or two passes to get in behind the defence and Trincao should have made it 3-1 when he shot wide from eight yards out.
Substitute Anthony Gordon then came close to a dramatic leveller but his near-post header from a corner was superbly tipped away by Sa.
The Toffees couldn’t find a way through though as they slumped to yet another miserable loss in a campaign that is disintegrating all around them.
It is difficult to see where Everton go from here. With such a paper thin squad Benitez does not have many options to change things around, while Doucoure and Calvert-Lewin are still several weeks away from a return.
They were much better in the second half here but they did not do enough to deserve anything. It shouldn’t take a team to go 2-0 down to suddenly start to play.
Evertonians are already doing the calculations to see how the Toffees can get to 40 points ahead of another rebuilding job next summer.