Hwang Hee-chan scored twice to inspire Wolves to their first home win of the season against beleaguered Newcastle, who remain without a victory this term.
The game sparked into life after 20 minutes, when Hwang latched on to Raul Jimenez’s through ball before finishing coolly beyond the onrushing Karl Darlow.
Jeff Hendrick fired Newcastle level with a long-range drive into the bottom corner – moments after Francisco Trincao had rattled the crossbar for Wolves at the other end.
Jose Sa had to be on his toes to deny Allan Saint-Maximin from point-blank range within minutes of the restart, but Hwang’s left-footed finish – from another Jimenez pass – restored the home side’s lead.
Newcastle slip into the bottom three after a seventh league game without a win, while Wolves climb into the top half.
Hwang and Jimenez heap pressure on Bruce
Wolves boss Bruno Lage will hope Saturday’s victory gives his side some much-needed momentum following an inconsistent start to the campaign.
His team have had little trouble creating opportunities but converting them has been another matter, with only bottom-of-the-table Norwich finding the net on fewer occasions prior to this game.
There was little in the way of goalmouth action in the early stages as Newcastle made a lively start, but Hwang’s opener swung the pendulum in the hosts’ favour.
Newcastle boss Steve Bruce said the switch to a back four “certainly helped” the Mapgies in last weekend’s 1-1 draw at Watford, but the 60-year-old was forced to abandon his 4-3-3 formation in favour of a 5-4-1 in the first half as Wolves dominated the midfield.
The change soon paid off as Hendrick drilled home a loose ball from the edge of the penalty area to restore parity. Wolves were unhappy with Joelinton’s challenge on goalkeeper Sa in the build-up to the goal, but the home side’s appeals were quickly dismissed by the video assistant referee.
Saint-Maximin – who endured a frustrating afternoon at Molineux – went closest for the visitors in a second-half of few clear-cut chances, but Hwang struck again after more fine work from the tireless Jimenez to clinch the points for Wolves.
In a week which has seen Newcastle embroiled in legal proceedings with the Premier League regarding last summer’s collapsed takeover of the club, Magpies fans could be forgiven for asking where their first win of the season is going to come from.
Injured striker Callum Wilson cannot return quickly enough – Newcastle have claimed just two victories in their 17 Premier League games without the 29-year-old.
- 1Malheiro de Sá
- 22Nélson Semedo
- 28João Moutinho
- 11Machado TrincãoSubstituted forDendonckerat 86′minutes
- 26Hwang Hee-ChanSubstituted forTraoréat 90+3′minutes
- 17Fábio Silva
- 19ManquilloBooked at 60minsSubstituted forMurphyat 70′minutes
- 2ClarkBooked at 56mins
- 36S Longstaff
- 24AlmirónSubstituted forGayleat 77′minutes
- 28WillockSubstituted forHendrickat 36′minutes
Match ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Newcastle United 1.
Second Half ends, Wolverhampton Wanderers 2, Newcastle United 1.
Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Adama Traoré replaces Hwang Hee-Chan.
Attempt missed. Federico Fernández (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Matt Ritchie following a set piece situation.
Foul by João Moutinho (Wolverhampton Wanderers).
Matt Ritchie (Newcastle United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt missed. Raúl Jiménez (Wolverhampton Wanderers) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Leander Dendoncker with a headed pass.
Offside, Newcastle United. Ciaran Clark tries a through ball, but Allan Saint-Maximin is caught offside.
Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Leander Dendoncker replaces Trincão.
Foul by Nélson Semedo (Wolverhampton Wanderers).
Allan Saint-Maximin (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Corner, Newcastle United. Conceded by Romain Saïss.
João Moutinho (Wolverhampton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Sean Longstaff (Newcastle United).
Foul by Romain Saïss (Wolverhampton Wanderers).
Dwight Gayle (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Attempt missed. Dwight Gayle (Newcastle United) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Matt Ritchie with a cross.
Substitution, Newcastle United. Dwight Gayle replaces Miguel Almirón.
Foul by Raúl Jiménez (Wolverhampton Wanderers).
Ciaran Clark (Newcastle United) wins a free kick on the left wing.
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