Sunday, August 29, 2010

Wolves held at bay

Wolverhampton Wanderers 1 - 1 Newcastle Utd

A goal from Bigger Lad, his fourth of the month, was enough to ensure we returned from Molineux with a point. Chris Hughton opted to once again send out the same team for our third league game in a row, despite some decent performances by the understudies in last Wednesday's win over Accrington Stanley (landing us with a trip to Chelsea for our troubles).

Despite being the away team, it was Newcastle who enjoyed much the better of the first half, with Wayne Routledge in particular coasting past his man at will, and his pace proved a constant problem for Wolves throughout the match. In midfield, ASBO was the subject of a targeted approach to aggravate him, with Wolves captain Karl Henry guilty of a number of robust challenges on our midfielder.

Despite creating several decent chances, neither Bigger Lad (guilty of one particularly bad miss from only a few yards out) and Kevin Nolan could register our advantage on the scoreboard and their profligacy was to prove costly when Sylvain Ebanks-Blake fired home shortly before half time, Mike Williamson having ignored the warning signs from minutes earlier when the Wolves striker headed against the post.

Wolves had one golden chance to clinch the points when James Perch slid in on Matt Jarvis in the area and didn't look to get any of the ball. Thankfully the referee didn't agree with the home fans' calls for a penalty.

Despite the increasingly aggressive attention he was suffering, ASBO was able to exact some form of revenge by delivering a free-kick onto the head of Bigger Lad in the 64th minute to nod home unmarked and level the scores.

With referee Stuart Attwell rapidly losing control of the match, the bookings soon started to rack up with Perch, Big Lad and ultimately ASBO all joining Bigger Lad and Nolan in the book along with seven home players.

Of concern for Hughton will be the way in which the team conceded a series of pretty needless fouls which invited pressure as the game drew to a conclusion, together with the fact that for the third game in succession Perch and ASBO both picked up bookings.

However, the continuing good form of Bigger Lad together with our resilience and creative edge suggest that our aim of 17th or better continues to look a very real prospect.

Other reports: BBC, Observer


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