Wolves 1-1 Newcastle United: Boly 95th-minute equaliser leaves Rafa Benitez furious following Dubravka challenge 
(Getty Images - Chloe Knott)

Wolves 1-1 Newcastle United: Boly 95th-minute equaliser leaves Rafa Benitez furious following Dubravka challenge 

Wolves left it late to rescue a point with yet another stoppage time goal that sees them move four points clear in seventh.

joshuakerr97
Joshua Kerr
Wolverhampton WanderersPatricio; Bennett, Coady, Boly; Doherty (Traoréat 81), Neves, Moutinho, Dendoncker (Cavaleiro 69), Jota (Hélder Costa 69'); Jimenez
Newcastle UnitedDubravka; Yedlin, Lascelles, Schar, Lejuene, Atsu (Almirón 72'); Perez (Manquillo 90+1), Longstaff, Hayden (Diamé 86), Ritchie; Rondon.
SCORE0-1, Min.56, Hayden, 1-1, Min.90+5, Boly
INCIDENTSPREMIER LEAGUE GAMEWEEK 26 AT MOLINEUX BETWEEN WOLVES AND NEWCASTLE

30,867 Molineux supporters were once again put through the wringer in the Black Country as their beloved Wolves showcased the never-say-die attitude that epitomised the work the outstanding work Nuno Espirito Santos has done to rescue a point against a brave Newcastle United.

What is it with Wolves and stoppage-time goals? Four minutes and 34 seconds into stoppage-time Willy Boly rose highest to save his team from another embarrassing defeat against the league strugglers and bar his team from a night that was summarised with excruciating missed opportunities.

A game that lacked colour and imagination was settled by a rare goalkeeping error from Rui Patricio and a controversial late scramble in the box that saw Martin Dubravka dispossessed by the incoming Boly.

Wolves were hunting for their fourth-consecutive win for the first time since 1972 in an attempt to distance themselves in seventh, but the hosts will have to take a point as their late-game dramatics came into effect once again.

"That's what we have, until the last second. I’m really pleased as this character is something we must keep doing. Believing that moment can arrive.” echoed Nuno when reference his team's never-say-die attitude in his post-match comments.

For so long the country's best-placed team outside the top-six have faltered crucial points against the division's strugglers and the Midlands outfit once again tore up the script with a late goal to rescue a point and move five points clear in seventh.

The defeat at Wembley for Rafa Benitez a week ago, against Tottenham and the draw at Molineux tonight, were as fine descriptions of their manager’s abilities to take this team to the depths that defy the constant doubters.

Despite another late goal conceded at the hands of Wolves, Benitez is continuing with the bare resources he has and even despite being able to fully see the impact of his record signing due to limited minutes he continues to get results with his unfaltering pragmatic approach.

Throughout the season and away from more prominent discussions about the potential sale of the club and Mike Ashley’s transfer reticence,  Benitez has suffered criticism. Not from fans of the club, but certainly from outsiders, who view the Spaniard's disaffection with Ashley as a scapegoat for his side’s performances and league position.

Equally, whatever he is able to achieve at Newcastle must always be divided by whatever Ashley’s effect is calculated to be – which is what caught the eye as Benitez's side so nearly inspired their first league away win since December.

As for Wolves, they’ve been trading places with the likes of Everton, Leicester and West Ham in recent weeks, but a late draw against the Magpies meant they opened up a six-point gap over the Toffees, with a game in hand.

Benitez confirmed post-game that he expected Miguel Almiron to play a part in the Monday night trip to the Midlands and the travelling supporters were blessed with 20 enjoyable minutes from the club-record Paraguayan.

The former MLS starlet showcased signs he can provide some much-needed support to Salomon Rondon and his trickery drew Wolves into several needless foul despite only being on the field for just over a quarter of an hour.

For now, though, the right response is to recognise how well Benitez is coaching certain departments within the game and – the previous fortnight especially – appreciate how his stubbornness is steering the Newcastle boat once again towards the lucrative lights of survival. 

His team may only remain a point above the drop but recent results have demonstrated that Newcastle have the spine to stay up. The criticism Benitez faces from some is instructed by a nebulous loyalty to Ashley. The smiling Sports Direct owner appeared several times on the TV cameras with a beaming smile on his face and no wonder when his employer is delivering such success despite the lack of resources.

Topless Geordies were spotted singing in a wave of noise living in their own myriad only for their hearts to be shattered at the death when Boly struck home the all-important equaliser.

The story of the game

There was to be no debut start for club-record signing Miguel Angel Almiron following his £20 million move from Atlanta as the Paraguay international only made the bench.  

The opening 20 minutes didn't live up to the perennial Monday night pre-match disco that overshadowed the initial contest with limited chances for either team.

Like any Benitez side, the Magpies stuck to their pragmatic defensive approach with organisation clearly the message the Spaniard was echoing to his players. 

An anaemic opening to proceedings meant neither side really took the game to either opponent. Newcastle were enticingly lacking in quality with the ball. Their limited options forced defender Fabian Scharr into a number of wasted 30-yard passes that came to virtually no effect.

Graham Scott was called into action when Molineux erupted screaming penalty claims. What initially looked a nailed on spot-kick following Jonny's cutback into the path of Raul Jimenez who tangled with Christian Atsu on the edge of the box turned out to be a brave and correct decision that the Oxfordshire official waved away instantly. 

Jimenez was the busiest outfield source for the hosts. The Mexican striker first squandered a shot from a Matt Doherty cross before bein dispossessed from a promising position after being fed through by Leander Dendoncker.

Ruben Neves delivered an exquisite diagonal ball into Jimenez who toyed with Yedlin on the byline before cutting inside to create an angle of space before striking straight at Martin Dubravka. The Slovakian was busy minutes later denying Jonny with the bottom of his boot.

The visitors finally mustered an effort on goal when Saloman Rondon headed straight into the hands of Rui Patricio and Newcastle were later screaming penalty when Matt Ritchie hit the deck following an impediment from Matt Doherty. The Scotland international protested with venom only to earn himself the first booking of the night.

A potential turn in the tide saw the Magpies with another chance squandered when Perez's slick diagonal ball opened the Wolves back-line finding Rondon but was denied following an outstanding tackle from the hosts' ever-present skipper Connor Coady.

A Joao Moutinho corner was flicked by Jota into the path of Doherty who had the entire gaping only to head over.

Bust up between Jota and Schar got tempers boiling seconds into the second period. Handbags were well and truly out when the Portuguese forward was on the end of a follow-through from the 27-year-old Swiss who astonishingly avoided a booking only for Jota to then go in Scott's book much to the bemusement of the home supporters. 

The Black Country folk were finally treated to a goal and a quite avoidable one too. The Wolves back-three were opened up far too easy when Schar slid in Hayden who hit a tame and savable shot into the path of Patricio who bundled into his own net. 

Dendoncker attempted to inspire a response with a downward header that failed to impart a comfortable Dubravka. 

The travelling Magpies finally had their moment that made the lengthy trip all the worthwhile when they witnessed their club-record signing grace English football for the first time.

Jimenez missed another glorious chance before ballooning a shot out for a throw-in that summarised a disappointing night for the Mexican.

Hearts were in mouths with seconds to go and the home crowd were treated to a late equaliser when Bolly's 95th-minute header sent Molineux into delirium to cancel out Benitez' Magpies.

"That's why you're going down" chanted the home support who to the bereft away fans who know their team threw away a rare victory on the road. 

 

 

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