Report | Newcastle 2-1 Wolves

Newcastle United 2 (Isak 27, Almiron 79) Wolves 1 (Hwang 70)

Despite a goal from Hee Chan Hwang just seconds after making his Wolves return, Julen Lopetegui’s men left St James’ Park empty-handed having been unable to stage a complete turnaround against Newcastle United.

The South Korean capitalised on a slip-up in the Newcastle defence to equalise 20 minutes from time after Alexander Isak had given the hosts a first-half lead. With Nick Pope to thank for making several top-quality saves to deny Wolves, the Magpies claimed victory through Miguel Almiron as the substitute found space behind the old gold defence and slotted his finish into the far corner.

Having made four changes to the side which begun at Molineux against Tottenham Hotspur eight days earlier, Wolves started slowly against the Magpies as Newcastle pressed from the first whistle.

Although the early stages of the fixture were quite scrappy with the ball sticking around the middle third, it was the hosts who had the best chances of a first-half which the men in white and black were well on top.

Newcastle’s best opportunities were coming from set-pieces as they took advantage of Kieran Trippier’s ability, but the England man could only fire the ball into the wall from a good position just outside the box.

Wolves’ attacking threat was coming down the right through Adama Traore but several of the winger’s crosses were unable to find Raul Jimenez.

The Mexican almost capitalised on a mistake from the Dan Burn as he intercepted his pass back to Pope, and having appeared to have been clipped by the goalkeeper, Jimenez went down. However, referee Andrew Madley felt there was not enough in the challenge and his decision was backed by VAR.

Just minutes later, Newcastle took the lead – and it came from a Trippier free-kick. The Newcastle right-back lifted the ball into the box from in front of the dugouts and his cross was met by the head of Isak who diverted the ball past the outstretched arms of Jose Sa and inside the far corner of the net.

After going behind, Wolves struggled to cope with Newcastle and were all at sea as a defensive unit, and it took block after block by Craig Dawson and Maximilian Kilman in the centre to stop Isak, Allan Saint-Maximin and Joe Murphy from adding a second for the hosts.

The closest Newcastle came to doubling their advantage came through Bruno Guimaraes, who struck the crossbar with a header having got on the end of Burn’s cross back into the box after the initial ball was only half-cleared by Wolves.

While Wolves also struck the woodwork. With five minutes of the half remaining, Daniel Podence took matters into his own hands as he cut inside onto his right foot before aiming a low drive past Pope, but the upright came to the England keeper’s rescue.

Half-time | Newcastle 1-0 Wolves

Wolves begun the second-half in similar vein to how they ended the first, with Newcastle the side on top, but Lopetegui’s men did start to create more opportunities as the 45 minutes progressed.

Neves was getting chances from distance, but he was unable to test Pope, while Podence saw his run cut out as he tried to break Wolves forward with support either side. But it was the Newcastle keeper who the hosts were indebted to for delaying Wolves from getting back in the game.

Twice Pope made stunning saves to keep the ball out of his net, firstly he was at full stretch to push away a Pedro Neto free-kick that was heading into the top corner, before making an outstanding block to deny Moutinho who connected well with a volley inside the penalty area.

However, Sa was not to be outdone by his opposite number and produced a brilliant save of his own to deny Trippier from 25 yards out as the defender went for goal from a free-kick.

But Wolves did hit back with 20 minutes remaining. Seconds after coming off the bench for his first appearance since injury, Hwang capitalised on a slip by Trippier before tapping the ball into an empty net with Pope stranded.

After switching to a back five with Nathan Collins replacing Moutinho, Newcastle took advantage of having an extra man in midfield as fellow substitute Almiron was played in behind the Wolves defence and lifted the ball over Sa to regain the lead for the Magpies.

Wolves tried everything they could to get back into the game but were unable to make any impact on the Newcastle goal in the final 10 minutes, as Newcastle held on to claim all three points.

Full-time | Newcastle 2-1 Wolves

Newcastle | Pope, Trippier, Schar, Botman, Burn, Guimaraes, Longstaff, Willock, Murphy (Ritchie 84), Saint-Maximin (Almiron 68), Isak (Wilson 68).

Unused subs | Dubravka, Manquillo, Lascelles, Dummett, Targett, Anderson.

Wolves | Sa, Semedo, Dawson, Kilman, Jonny (Ait-Nouri 70), Neves (Nunes 70), Lemina, Moutinho (Collins 75), A. Traore (Neto 46), Podence (Hwang 70), Jimenez.

Unused subs | Bentley, Toti, J. Gomes, Cunha.

Referee | Andrew Madley