The first game of the Premier League Asia Trophy was the opening pre-season game for both teams as Wolverhampton Wanderers took on Newcastle United on Wednesday morning with the former coming away with a 4-0 victory.
Two teams on opposite sides of their preparation, with Nuno Espírito Santo's team already preparing for their Europa League clash, and Newcastle still trying to move on from Rafa Benítez.
Story of the game
The game started slowly without any real emotion. Wolves controlled possession and Newcastle relied on their defensive cohesion to try and launch quick counter-attacks, but both teams were unable to create any real chances.
That is, until the 15th minute, when Diogo Jota combined perfectly with Jonny after the Spaniard's low cross found the Portuguese who, after dribbling past 2 defenders, shot from just outside the box onto the bottom left corner, making it 1-0.
The game resumed but not even the goal seemed to wake Newcastle up, as the Magpies were unable to disturb neither the Wolves back three, nor their goalkeeper.
João Moutinho, Rúben Neves and Jonny controlled the intermediate part of the field and nullified Jack Colback, Newcastle's engine in the midfield.
It was without surprise that, in the 32nd minute, the youngster Morgan Gibbs-White scored Wolves' second goal, his first, with a great outside-the-box shot, provided once again by Jonny.
2-0 up and with the momentum clearly on their side, it wasn't long until Wolverhampton fans were celebrating again, when Jota scored his second of the game in the 40th minute, making it 3-0 at half-time.
Both teams made some changes at the break which ended up removing the intensity and emotion that the game had so far, and so the second half had very few relevant moments.
The added youth at Wolves defensive end allowed Newcastle to gain some upside and some interesting attacking moments, but none of them can be described as actual goal attempts.
Wolves were still able to add another goal. The Portuguese left-back Ruben Vinagre took a low corner and Thomas Allan ended up scoring an own-goal with six minutes left, closing the score at 4-0.
Takeaways from the match
Jota never slows down
The Portuguese forward doesn't seem to take any time off. His first game of pre-season saw him notch two goals and witnessed hm combine for a number of great plays that would be enough to get any Wolves fan excited for the upcoming season.
After last season's nine goals and five assists in the Premier League, fans can expect a lot of improvement from the 22-year-old.
Newcastle need some guidance
First off, this was Newcastle's first pre-season game, so of course there were likely to be some slips here and there.
However, throughout the game, it never really looked like there was any sort of plan.
The players were unable to create plays from the back and relied mainly on long balls to Jacob Murphy, Matt Ritchie and Yoshinori Muto, that were easily handled by Wolverhampton's competent back three.
The Magpies showed some good indications, but there is a lot of work to be done.