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Season 2019-20
Wolves (a)
Premier League


Saturday 12th January 2020, 3.00pm


Conditions: Stricken
Programme: £3.50



1 - 1




7 mins One of Newcastle's most cleverly-worked goals of the season began with a Wolves throw in their own half on their right flank that the visitors pressed well. Matt D Sean Longstaff collected possession and his instant forward pass to the left hand channel was chested by Dwight Gayle into the path of the overlapping Jetro Willems.

He pushed on towards the box and then made his familiar stop and turn infield before laying the ball into the path of the onrushing Gayle. He killed the momentum of the ball with one foot and expertly diverted with the other for Miguel Almiron to confidently crack a first time effort from 12 yards out into the roof of the net at the South Bank / Sir Jack Hayward End. 1-0

14 mins Joao Moutinho's corner from the right side was inadvertantly flicked on at the near post by substitute Florian Lejeune and dropping for Leander Dendoncker to poke in from 10 yards out, with his alleged marker Federico Fernandez nowhere near. 1-1

Half time: Wolves 1 Newcastle 1

Full time: Wolves 1 Newcastle 1

We Said


Steve Bruce said:

"In the first 20 minutes, I thought we looked very dangerous and scored a great goal. 

"Unfortunately, to lose two - and nearly three because Joelinton was nowhere near fit... is bordering on ridiculous. With the problems, you take a point.

"With the problems we've got we deserved something. I don't think there's a club out there which has 12 or 13 players missing.

"They ran a million miles and their resilience was there for everyone to see. We lacked a bit of quality in the top end of the pitch but I couldn't fault their effort and endeavour. 

"I thought it was going to be a repeat of when we lost four players in 12 minutes against Leicester.

(linton) had the courage to carry on when we were down to the bare bones. It's ridiculous, I've never known anything like it in 40 years.

"Weíve got frigging more sports scientists than you know what to do with.

"If I measured the two Longstaffs today and (Miguel) Almiron, theyíve ran a million miles. To ask them to go again on Tuesday is the same thing, you run the risk. 

"Thatís why we do a rotation but Iíve got no choice. I canít rotate.

"I couldnít risk (Matt) Ritchie and Andy Carroll because theyíve just come back. Ritchie played half an hour (against Rochdale) but trained all week, so always in our mind was Tuesday. Thatís one on the team sheet for Tuesday but heís been out for months so we have to make sure heís ready.

ďI will not just bring in players that donít make us any better. We will not just see people coming in because we have 10, 12 players injured. Who knows, in two or three weeks, we might have them all back, and then what do you do with the ones you bring in?Ē

On Dummett:

"Dummett has done his other leg - the hamstring." 

On Gayle:

Gayle, we think is a groin injury. Weíll see how he is. Itís really frustrating for all of us.Ē

"He was terrific
(before going off injured). 

"Iíve been asked this question time and time again. Why am I going to let him go on loan? And to where? Itís not possible, not with the problems weíve had. Iíve said that from day one.

"Iíve waited for him for two and a half months because heís been injured, then the team has done OK so heís found it a struggle to get in.

ďIíve started him twice in the last four or five games! He was excellent today. Heís  not going anywhere, itís quite simple."

On Almiron:

"Heís a top, top player, isnít he? 

"People were questioning him when he hadnít scored a goal but heís a top player, a top pro, a great lad, and a delight to have.Ē

They Said

Nuno Espirito Santo said:

"Not so good, not so good.

"Newcastle were well organised, but we didn't start the game well. We reacted to the goal and after that, I think we managed better. We created chances Ė but not the normal production that we have.

"Newcastle, like I say, were organised. It was difficult to find the lines and spaces, but we tried really hard until the end. The Newcastle goalkeeper made a couple of saves, and had a fantastic game that allowed them to stay in it.

"It was not the best one, but the character and willingness was there.

"We produced good saves. But we should improve on the final touch. It was difficult as Newcastle did not want to go for the game. It was very tight, and we struggled there, but we created a couple of good chances, so we have to improve.

"Iím not happy because we didnít perform like we all wish, like we expect and should do. I always want perfection and sometimes days like this happen.

"Itís obvious that we must bring players. Today was not the best, it was difficult, not many spaces, but the final delivery should be better.

"We are working and hopefully things work out and we can solve it. We need solutions, we need more than specific position, players that can bring us different situations, that can help us in these kind of games.Ē


Mags @ Molineux - last 10:

2019/20 Drew 1-1 Almiron
2018/19 Drew 1-1 Hayden
Won 1-0 Mitrovic
2011/12 Won 2-1 Ba, Gutierrez
2010/11 Drew 1-1 Carroll
2003/04 Drew 1-1 Shearer
2002/03 Lost 2-3 Jenas, Shearer(pen) (FAC)
2002/03 Won 2-0 LuaLua 2 (FR)
1992/93 Lost 0-1
1991/92 Lost 2-6 Quinn, G.Peacock

Newcastle are now unbeaten on their last six visits to Molineux in all competitions and have never lost there in the Premier League. Their last top-flight reverse there was in November 1977.

After ten PL away games this season that were either lost or won, United drew the eleventh. Before today, their most recent PL stalemate on the road was at Brighton back in April.

Unused substitutes included defender Kelland Watts (wearing 49) after his loan spell at Stevenage was cut short and striker Tom Allan (wearing 50). Watts had been on the bench once before (versus Fulham away in May 2019), while Allan kept his place after being named among the replacements in the FA Cup at Rochdale last week. Both are yet to make competitive debuts for United, but did feature in pre-season against Wolves during the Asia Trophy meeting in China. 

Miguel Almiron's third Newcastle goal (his second in the PL) was the 500th scored in our favour away from SJP in the PL since Coventry City's Peter Whittingham put the ball into his own net at Highfield Road in August 1993. Miggy's effort came in our 471st PL away game.

PL away goal landmarks:

John Barnes at West Ham Sep 1997 (won)
200th Nicos Dabizas at the mackems Feb 2002 (won)
300th Obafemi Martins at Blackburn Dec 2007 (won)
400th Sylvain Marveaux at Arsenal Dec 2012 (lost)
500th Miguel Almiron at Wolves Jan 2020 (drew)

Early Doors:

United have now scored first seven times in 12 league and cup away games this season: 

27 mins Joelinton v Spurs (won)
7 mins Willems v Liverpool (lost)
16 mins Clark v West Ham (won)
15 mins Saint-Maximin v Sheffield United (won)
17 mins M.Longstaff v Manchester United (lost)
17 mins Almiron v Rochdale (drew)
7 mins Almiron v Wolves (drew)

Eight of the eleven goals scored in league and cup away games this season have come in the first half. Last season, that split was 15 first half and eight second (the latter including extra time).





On the whistle report from Molineux for Newcastle: one shot, one goal, one point....three injuries.

For the second successive league game, United were forced to make a pair of enforced changes during the first half and left another player on at reduced power for over an hour. 

We're not sure whether they returned to the North East by team bus or air ambulance...

Despite the selection issues posed by a sick list and those later problems though, a committed and gutsy display was enough to earn a thoroughly deserved point for the Magpies, Miguel Almiron's fine goal and Martin Dubravka's prowess pivotal in halting a run of three successive league defeats.

There were four changes to the side at Rochdale; a shortage of full backs seeing Isaac Hayden swap one unfamiliar role for another; switching from central defence at Spotland to right back here.

Declared fit to start were Jetro Willems, Ciaran Clark, Paul Dummett and Dwight Gayle but after scoring a fine team goal from their first attack, things soon began to unravel again.

First to drop out (quite literally) was Paul Dummett, replaced by Florian Lejeune, whose breather on the bench proved to be short-lived. Within a minute of that Wolves levelled from a set piece and next to succumb was Gayle - halting what had been a brief but profitable partnership with Almiron; Gayle's improvised assist for Miggy's goal his second vital intervention in that fine flowing move.

Perhaps mindful of the calamity of the Leicester game when the third and final substitution was made at half time only for a further casualty to be incurred seconds after the restart, groin strain victim Joelinton remained on the field after and carried before making way for Andy Carroll late on.

Given that set of circumstances, it's hardly surprising that United adopted a safety-first policy and successfully held on for a point that was achieved with rather more ease than might be expected. 

The pace of Adama Traore brought danger to the visitors and excitement for home followers in a manner not dissimilar to Allan Saint-Maximins (remember him?). Thankfully though he faded after the break, as a Wolves side who have played 37 competitive games this season lacked a spark. 

By contrast, we're on our knees after a paltry 24 outings - although Bruce was quick to dismiss any talk that training methods or sports science had changed under his watch. If that is the case, then maybe the transfer window that ended in August wasn't quite as "remarkable" as the Head Coach claimed and the soft tissue damage echoes the soft underbelly of the first team and U23 squads. 

Opinion was divided here last season as to whether Dubravka was impeded as he claimed when dropping the ball to concede a late leveller. However his contribution was all positive today, making excellent saves including a remarkable stop with his left leg to deny Raul Jimenez from close range. 

Returning to the ground that he debuted on last February meanwhile, Almiron more than earned his money all over the field during the afternoon as he tracked back and tackled with relish. Continuing the "all hands to the pump" theme, Matty Longstaff hooked the ball clear from in front of the line.

That evident effort was recognised at full time by the travelling support, appreciative of what they had witnessed and aware that this was potentially a decent and timely point. 

United ended the weekend thirteenth with 26 points, five clear of third bottom side Aston Villa and with Bournemouth and Norwich City continuing to nose dive as revitalised Watford do the opposite.  

In terms of our own tally, that's five places and eight points better than at the same time last season, after which we went on to claim 27 more points from the remaining 16 games. 

One senses that is less achievable in 2020 though, given both the scoring and fitness concerns and the fact we're not misfiring quite enough for the Ashley disaster fund to be touched this month.  


Page last updated 13 January, 2020