CHRIS HUMPHRIES GIVES HIS REPORT FOR NEWCASTLE 2 WOLVES 1
The weekends results went for both sides before kick off at St James’ Park so this looked like being an enthralling match. Julen Lopetegui finally made the decision this author has been imploring for the last few weeks and replaced Nunes with Moutinho bringing Raul into attack and also Podence and Adama. This just shows the depth of our squad these days.
First few minutes of the game passed quickly with Newcastle on the front foot, Jacob Murphy getting forward well down Wolves left, after three minutes Adama goes on a great run and was released down the left wing , the free kick was defended well but it came back to Moutinho who killed it instantly with a great touch, this eventually saw Adama released down the right wing who crossed the ball just over Raul’s head at the near post.
Things settled down with both sides moving the ball around well some good work by Newcastle leaves Moutinho bringing down Guimaraes for a dangerous free kick on the edge of the 18 yard box, Trippier struck the free kick well but the wall did its job.
A decent move from Traore and Semedo puts Newcastle under pressure but the move only leads to a goal goal kick.
After 13 minutes we have had 38 percent possession in the Wolves final third. Pressing wolves higher Newcastle win a corner which is defended well by Dawson.
Some good work again by Traore down the right and then Semedo as well but the ball goes out for a Newcastle goal kick.
Good ball out from Kilman after a Newcastle attack see Neves and three others break forward but Ruben gets his pass all wrong then Dan Burn follows through in the Wolves box with a dirty challenge on Neves but Wolves break and Newcastle make a mess at it and in the process Jiminez steals the ball and is brought down in what should be a penalty in my opinion. VAR doesn’t agree!
Wolves are pressing well now with 23 minutes gone and Newcastle are jittery, Moutinho breaks and nearly feeds Raul clear but the pass was intercepted.
Free kick given away by Raul in my view and Trippier puts the ball on Isak’s head for a goal, poor tracking by Jonny sadly.
Then straight from the quick off Isak breaks free and gets the ball across and Wolves manage to scramble it back for a corner. Wolves get the ball back and push forward with Raul making Pope make a save from 20 yards, Newcastle are stretching Wolves now and Kilman block’s another effort from Isak.
It’s all Newcastle now and wolves will do well to keep this to just the one goal at half time.
Now on 33 minutes Moutinho gives Newcastle another opportunity to deliver a cross which Wolves defend. Newcastle are battering Wolves here now it’s going to be a long way back here I hope this is the usual tale of two halves.
Semedo is playing really well defending Saint-Maximin he’s having to put a real shift in. Sadly, Wolves have left a man free on the back post twice in succession, we are riding our luck here.
Wolves seem to have got some more control of the ball and Neves feeds Podence who lets rip from 20 yards and beats Pope but comes back off the woodwork. Podence breaks and feeds Adama who passes poorly to Semedo which allows Newcastle to get the ball out for a throw, next Semedo feeds Adama who gets a corner.
Newcastle come again and it’s Podence this time who gives away another free kick for Trippier to take – stupid!
Half time 1-0 Newcastle with a penalty for Wolves not given fair challenge penalised and goal scored from the resulting free kick , but we are still in this!!!
Second half starts with Neto replacing Adama Traore which surprised me, lets hope it’s a masterstroke.
Wolves press early and are trying to force Newcastle back at the start of the game, but there are some real poor passes occurring, we need to calm down and concentrate. Kilman slips a ball into Neves who digs the ball out and lets go with a trademark effort but it goes well wide.
Isak chases the ball down as we are messing about with it around the back. Five minutes into the second half and Wolves really don’t look like getting back into it. Raul chases down Pope again but this time he manages to clear and takes a piece of Raul at the same time.
55 minutes gone and Podence breaks but doesn’t lay the ball into Neto’s path and loses possession resulting in a Newcastle break and they nearly score.
Wolves break Moutinho finds Podence who makes a nice move and wins a central free kick on the D of the 18 yard box. Neto takes the free kick and hits the cross bar. Newcastle break and Semedo pulls the Newcastle player for a yellow card, Lemina had got round to cover so no red. Trippier goes near post and Sa saves smartly to his left.
60 minutes gone, good work from Neto frees Semedo and Trippier clears for a corner, Wolves take it short and Podence draws a save from Pope.
Wolves are keeping a good handle on the ball at the moment- can they produce a goal?
More good work from Neto who is playing well gets Wolves an attacking throw, they recycle the ball and it comes to Neves clear in the box who hits it out of the ground almost. Neto again with great work down the right uses the outside of his foot to find Moutinho who sees his shot parried by Pope.
65 minutes gone now and Lemina makes a mistake but works back to save himself and concedes a corner. Wolves clear the first and the second corner is defended well, 67 minutes gone Isak for
Wilson , Almiron for Saint-Maximin are the Newcastle subs. Neves for Nunes, Hwang for Podence and Rayan Ait-Nouri for Jonny.
The play goes on and Wolves move forward with Ait-Nouri, Nunes gets the ball, feeds it to Raul but its cleared straight to Hwang who finishes 1-1.
Referee you can blow the whistle now, right now I’d be content if it ended this way , this is a different Wolves in the second half (again).
20 minutes left Trippier is stood over the ball and delivers a free kick , there is a VAR shout for a penalty but it is ruled out.
74 minutes gone, Collins comes on for Wolves in replacing Moutinho, Kilman is given the armband.
Both sides are looking to have that golden opportunity here but Wolves have conceded ground by going to a back 5.
Newcastle makes a break and feed Almiron who is played onside by Collins bad defending. Julen Lopetegui has allowed that to happen. Ait- Nouri was caught upfield and Almiron exploited the gap left by him.
5 minutes left and everything Wolves were doing well has stopped. We’ve lost the movement we had since the change. Julen needs to understand the concept that the best form of defence is attack, it’s right we apply credit when it is due, having made a great change to get us back into the game but I feel his change to 3 at the back has had an adverse effect on us.
A long ball from Rayan Ait-Nouri who tries to pick out Colins and he just ushers it out for a goal kick not sure what thats all about! 5 minutes of injury time is announced this is the time for Wolves to push and make them panic, I don’t think our side is set up to do that sadly. Wolves have now pushed Collins up in desperation which is a shame as Nunes fires the ball out for a Newcastle corner.
Rayan Ait-Nouri is shown up by Almiron again but Wolves break and have a corner in the last minute of the game it comes to nothing and the game is over.
Full Time Newcastle 2 Wolves 1
Wolves competed they should have had a penalty and Newcastle probably had a lucky escape with Pope not being sent off. We could have got a draw but now we move on to the next game .
Match rating performance for me was a 7, man of the match I thinkI will give to Nelson Semedo
ARTICLE BY CHRIS HUMPHRIES
Chris Humphries is a Season Ticket holder at Molineux who has been supporting Wolves since the mid 70’s. His other interests include Formula 1 and Rallying.