Saturday afternoon saw Newcastle United draw 1-1 against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux, as more questions are being asked about Newcastle’s ever increasing injury list.
Goals were exchanged early on: Miguel Almiron first finding the net for his 3rd in all competitions, being perfectly teed up by Dwight Gayle to beat Rui Patricio.
This was before Leander Dendoncker levelled the game. Newcastle’s defence switched off, leaving the defender wide open as he slotted it into the bottom corner. This strike was the Belgian’s 2nd goal in the League this season.
It should have been 2-1 to the home side in the first half, with Raul Jimenez’s close range header forcing a miraculous save from goalkeeper Martin Dubravka: another great performance from the Slovakian shot-stopper.
Matty Longstaff made an exceptional goal line clearance in the opening minutes of the second half to keep it level at 1-1. As the minutes trickled down, Wolves began to crank up the pressure as the Newcastle attack became increasingly isolated, forced to defend in their own half as Adama Traore and Pedro Neto began to wreak havoc on the wings.
In the 80th minute, Dubravka was relied upon once again to pull off another brilliant save from Neto’s header. Another week in which Dubravka keeps his side firmly in the game, as Newcastle managed to grab a vital away point.
There were even more injury worries for the Magpies as Paul Dummett and Dwight Gayle were both taken off and replaced by Florian Lejeune and Christian Atsu respectively.
Another crisis for Bruce’s men in what is the 8th separate in-game injury in the first 3 games of 2020:
- Jetro Willems, Javier Manquillo, Jonjo Shelvey and Fabian Schar all came off with muscle problems against Leicester on New Year’s Day
- Almiron and Yoshinori Muto were both substituted with concerns against Rochdale.
- And now today’s injuries to Dummett and Gayle leave Newcastle with limited options for their upcoming cup and league clashes.
With one eye on Tuesday night’s FA Cup replay at home to Rochdale, Newcastle may be forced to rely on some youth players to patch the cracks in the Starting XI: today’s game saw youngsters Kell Watts and Tom Allan both on the bench, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the two 20 year olds line up against Rochdale at St James’ Park.
After Rochdale, Newcastle will host Frank Lampard’s Chelsea: earlier in the season, the Blues won 1-0 at Stamford Bridge.
Meanwhile Wolves have a midweek FA Cup replay away to Manchester United, after which they travel to the Coast to face off against an in-form Southampton.