Newcastle picked up a point at Molyneux today, against a dour Wolves side, but the visitors missed many chances to win this game, especially in the first half, and if they had taken just some of those chances, Newcastle could have registered their 3rd win in 6 days this afternoon.
This was a fiery game which saw 12 yellow cards given out by referee Stuart Attwell, who was even tolerant in his control of the game, with some fearsome tackles being made. Four players from Newcastle were booked – Nolan, Carroll, Ameobi and Perch all entering the referee’s book.
Newcastle started the game well and once again big Andy Carroll was winning everything in the air early in the game.
Newcastle went on the attack from the off this afternoon and had most of the early play and looked a very good side eat the beginning of the game.
But as a contrast to last week, when almost every opportunity was converted into a goal, Newcastle were missing some decent chances in the first half.
Newcastle were in their all white strip today and early on Routledge almost created a goal for the Magpies as he raced onto Jonas Gutierrez’s through-ball, rounded goalkeeper Hahnemann and cut the ball back across goal , but both Barton and Nolan failed to connect with the ball.
But for all Newcastle’s pressure, and despite how good the lads were playing, it was Wolves after 24 minutes who should have really taken the lead. From a David Jones’ corner the ball went to Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, who was completely unmarked, but he headed against the upright, when it seemed easier to score.
A big let-off for Newcastle and it was a great chance for the home side to punish a Newcastle side who were not taking the chances offered to them.
On 40 minutes another great chance for Newcastle was missed as Routledge robbed a defender and put the ball through to captain Kevin Nolan in the penalty box, and Kevin nicely teed up Andy Carroll from six yards out, but the ball amazingly flew over the bar.
Carroll argued that the ball was deflected and was booked for chasing after the referee Attwell to protest.
And then on 42 minutes, after having all the pressure Newcastle found themselves behind, as Sylvain Ebanks-Blake held off James Perch in the box to fire in a terrific drive that beat Steve Harper in the Newcastle goal.
So after almost dominating the game in the first half Newcastle were 1-0 down at the half.
Newcastle needed to somehow get back in this game and they started the second half in a determined way.
But Newcastle still survived an early second-half scare when James Perch slid in to bring down Matthew Jarvis in the area, for what looked like a creditable penalty appeal, but Attwell didn’t give it. On another day that would have been a penalty.
And 20 minutes into the second half Newcastle finally got back on level terms, as a Joey Barton free kick was nicely headed home by big Andy Carroll, for his 4th Premier League goal of the season.
It was a terrific free kick by Joey and another fantastic thundering header from the tall youngster, that went in off the post.
5 minutes later and it was Routledge who waltzed past Stephen Ward down the right wing, and pulled the ball back for Kevin Nolan, who struck it on the volley but the ball was blocked by goalkeeper Hahnemann, and the ball was scrambled away by the Wolves defense.
Newcastle just couldn’t get the winner and they will rue their many missed chances in the first half that should really have given them another win today. They were the much better side this afternoon, but left their shooting boots at home today it would seem.
However, this display will auger well for the future for Newcastle, as on another day (like last Sunday) those goals will go in – and Wolves played a very rough tackling game today – to say the least.
But it’s a point away at Molyneux, and we’ll take it.
Wolves: Hahnemann, Foley, Craddock, Berra, Ward, Jarvis, Henry, Jones, Van Damme, Ebanks-Blake, Doyle.
Subs: Hennessey, Stearman, Zubar, Mancienne, Guedioura, Edwards, Fletcher.
Newcastle United: Harper; Perch, Williamson, Coloccini, Enrique; Routledge, Barton, Smith, Gutierrez; Nolan, Carroll.
Subs: Krul, Lovenkrands, R Taylor, Ameobi, Kadar, Vuckic, Ranger.