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Wolves put in a good spirited performance in Saturday’s evening kick off, working very hard in a drenched Molineux stadium to get a well earned point against Newcastle United; of course with some VAR controversy as per usual. 

The line ups:

Gary O’Neil made two changes from the victory against Bournemouth bringing Mario Lemina and Nelson Semedo back into the starting 11 as Joao Gomes and Matt Doherty dropped to the bench. 


Sa – Semedo, Kilman, Dawson, Toti – Ait-Nouri, Traore (Doyle, 54), Lemina (Gomes, 85), Neto (Kalajdzic, 77) – Cunha, Hwang.


Pope – Trippier, Lascelles, Schar, Burn – Longstaff, Guimaraes, Joelinton – Almiron (Willock, 72), Wilson, Gordon.

The first half: 

The game started with both sides struggling to get the final ball Into the respective danger men. Wolves sat in well trying to remove the space from Newcastle so they couldn’t play through the middle pushing them into one Vs one positions on the wings which Semedo and Toti for the most part did well controlling. 

Wolves were finding success winning the ball back when pressing Newcastle deep into their own half, Ait Nouri on one occasion forcing Tripper into a poor pass which Hwang and Cunha between them couldn’t muster a strong enough effort against Pope. 

Newcastle’s opener came at a moment where neither side looked like scoring. A cross into a dangerous area from Gordon caused chaos in the Wolves back line. Jose Sa clattering into another Wolves man totally missing the ball as it pinged around the box from Wilson off Toti and back to Wilson to put into the net. Absolute Chaos. 

The game continued in a frantic fashion but now more open as chances started to come at both ends. Hwang having a tame shot before Cunha picked the ball up on the halfway line and charged past multiple Newcastle defenders to see his effort tipped wide by Pope. This moment really started to get Molineux going and you could see the belief from the pitch. Newcastle had good efforts themselves with Longstaff coming closest after finding his way into the box, but good defending forced him into a tame effort. 

Wolves equaliser came via Neto as he whipped a wicked corner into the back post and Mario Lemina was too strong for his man at the back post to head into the net. The corner was made by Neto smashing a shot which Pope tipped over. Another goal the Portuguese winger has very high levels of contribution to. 

Following Wolves equaliser, the half very much returned to type as it was at 0-0. As the game entered first half stoppage time it looked like the sides would enter level until the on field officials and VAR team had other plans. A Newcastle corner eventually fell to Hee Chan Hwang who dwelled on the ball until an out ball arrived. As he went to play a pass Fabian Schar got to the man and what happened next was just diabolical! Schar fell over rolling around like he had been shot as Hwang maybe slightly touched his man when clearing the ball, but at no point would the Swiss international defender have any control of the ball. Never a penalty, and after the fact when Newcastle legend Alan Shearer thinks it isn’t a penalty you know that you’ve been shafted once again. To add insult to injury the VAR check which followed felt so long it begs the question what are they actually doing. 

The on field decision was to stand and Callum Wilson dispatched the penalty after Sa almost got a big enough hand on it to save. 2-1 to Newcastle and the home crowd were incensed. The half ended with a VAR check at the opposite end for a Bruno hand ball which led to nothing and Joelinton breaking on the counter but Sa was equal to the midfielders effort. Half time 2-1 to Newcastle and boos ring around Molineux for the officials. 

Wolves News - report Wolves 2 Newcastle 2

The second half:

Immediately you could notice a new energy in Wolves who maintained more possession during the second half and really probed to create openings. Wolves were getting into good positions but with a combination of poor final balls, misunderstandings on the pitch between the attacking players and poor officiating nothing clear cut came about. Until… 

Toti Gomes was found on the right hand side with three defenders marking him and the other man on this side for a set piece, Toti picked up the ball weaved through two players played a brilliant through ball to Hwang and that Korean Guy did it again. Great movement to shift the ball past one Newcastle defender and fire into the near post 2-2, Wolves deserved to be level and it was a lot of hard work to get the equaliser. 

The momentum was with Wolves and second half substitute Tommy Doyle was really having a great time on the ball dictating tempo while finding Neves-esque passes out to the wingers and wingbacks. This momentum came crashing down when Neto on the counter just outside the Newcastle box pulled up and from initial reports looks to have a hamstring strain. We can just hope the best that Pedro is okay asap and the fact another international break is around the corner in two weeks provides that little bit more time for him to return. 

After Pedro’s withdrawal both sides struggled to get going moving forward and chances were few and far between. The story of most the game for Wolves was that maybe slightly better decision making on the ball and better opportunities would’ve been presented. This being said Newcastle turned up the pressure with multiple set piece opportunities in the final moments which Wolves dealt with well not giving them a sniff until the full time whistle where you’d expect both managers would be happy with a point. 

Over the course of 90 minutes a point was probably the fair outcome, but when both of Newcastles goals come through farcical moments it’s frustrating from a Wolves perspective. The first just being a cumulative effort of errors leading to Wilson’s second opportunity before a moment inevitably leading to a PMGOL apology on Monday. This makes it harder to take that Wolverhampton could not take all three points from the game. This said another game passes this season and Wolverhampton Wanderers were very much in contention and the Molineux crowd recognised this as the stadium was very loud under the lights in the pouring rain. 

Wolves had a lot of good performances left out on the pitch and it will be great to find out Craig Hickey’s player of the match on the Always Wolves player ratings.

Andrew Bennett, Always Wolves Fan TV


From my first Wolves match against Chelsea in 2003 I fell in love with the team and matchday experience. I work in digital marketing and have lived in Germany and Estonia over the past few years, this doesn’t stop me following Wolves and ensuring all my international friends become invested to the Wolf pack. I enjoy football, board games, a pint and travelling always excited to try new things. You will find me in the north bank on a matchday. 

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