Newcastle United 1 Wolves 1
St James’ Park, Att: 46,019
Another game another listless performance from a United side who looked helpless as soon as Wolves stepped up the intensity after a lacklustre first half.
A point home to Wolves isn’t a disaster for United (if I was a Wolves fan I’d think it was a disaster for them considering how poor their opponents were) but another 5,000 empty seats tells its own story.
What will bring those stay away fans back? Nothing anyone will have seen again from United today will convince anyone who thinks it isn’t the £37 the cheapest ticket is to come back.
The game started slowly. Wolves looked like a side playing in Eastern Europe 64 hours earlier. Neither goalkeeper had anything to do for the first half hour as Bruce’s claims that the side knew they had to create more looked ridiculous as it was more of get it to the fast lads and hope for the best.
That almost paid off as Almiron got on the end of a lifted ball from Matty Longstaff and surged into the box. His second touch should have been a shot and he put it wide with his third touch, the angle now against him. Wolves looked dangerous on the break but really neither keeper was required to play for most of the first half.
The Captain put us ahead from a recycled cross from Fernandez, who had a canny game bar one mental pass in the second half from which Wolves should have scored. It was only the second time we’d been ahead at home this season and some mad shops have Christmas stuff in them.
A lead at half time for the first time this season was to be welcomed but I was concerned that Wolves would get a bollocking from Nuno (first manager at SJP to wear gloves?) and come out a different side.
That’s what happened and Wolves turned the screw. A header went over from 6 yards out and it seemed only a matter of time from the 55th minute onwards. I thought the manager, also watching the game, would have seen this and attempted some sort of change. Not to be.
As predicted by anyone in the stands Wolves broke down our left side for the 547th time in the game and Dubravka flapped at a cross and they scored. It was deserved. Wolves should have wrapped the game up from there and it’s incredible they didn’t exert more pressure after Sean Longstaff saw red. Another straight red for this team, ten games in. It’s not good enough.
So a point to take us no further away from the relegation zone. Wolves were there for the beating but still the better side who should have won.
Can’t wait for the DVD release of this one. Onto West Ham. I’ve no idea how we score more once in a game this season.
A good point? We have start creating some changes and winning some games. It’s a bonus picking up points while not playing well but that assumes you’ll play well some weeks. We won’t get away with one-chance-one-goal football most weeks. We’ll get relegated.