Wolves boss admits Newcastle United deserved their victory as European hopes shattered
Bruno Lage arrived at St James Park with more Premier League away wins than all but the top three.
Eight victories on their travels with Wolves keeping six clean sheets amongst those eight away wins.
You know how Wolves are going to play and sure enough Bruno Lage had his team playing very deep, hoping to entice Newcastle up the pitch in numbers and then hit them on the break.
It doesn’t necessarily make for great viewing, unless you are talking about the technical ability many of the Wolves players possess, BUT it is invariably effective.
So much so that Wolves would have gone top six if beating Newcastle United and only two points off fourth.
Instead it was Newcastle who deservedly took the three points and despite still being 15 points adrift of Wolves, have now scored more goals than them (34 v 33).
However, summing up how difficult it is to get through their defences, Wolves still retain the fourth best defensive record, only 28 conceded in 32 games.
The Wolves boss admitting that Newcastle deserved to win but saying his players should have fouled a home player before they got close to the penalty area and won the penalty. A sweeping move that went from Wolves attacking to Newcastle winning the match winning penalty only seconds later, a brilliant touch by Saint-Maximin setting Joelinton away and his ball to Wood seeing the keeper bring him down.
Bruno Lage reflecting on losing to Newcastle United:
“It is very frustrating, especially the first 45 minutes, we know how to come and play against this team.
“They are very good at managing the game from the back four, with Shelvey to try and attract us and after, to do the runs in behind, they are very strong at that.
“Or to play to Wood, an experienced player who can keep the ball and play in behind our midfielders.
“I think that we controlled most of their movement…but after that we had the ball but didn’t create any chances.
“In the second half we came out with clear ideas and were much better at managing the game side to side, to find Jonny and Marcal.
“We found the dynamics we should do on the sides and that’s the moment when you feel the game is coming to us.
“One more time we suffer a penalty like that…it’s frustrating.
“We are inside their box and a good cross from Marcal, they win the ball and then after that, with two or three touches, they are inside our box and we give them a penalty and a big chance to score.
“When you look at that, it’s disappointing because we missed a big chance to win.
“But in this moment, I should give credit to Newcastle, because there weren’t too many chances but the chance they have they scored so they deserved to win to the game.
“It was not just him (Sa giving away the penalty), we lost the ball in their box, so there was 90 or 100 metres (before Newcastle got to the Wolves penalty area) so we need to have control.
“I never say this…but if we do a foul we need to do it with the first man and we didn’t.
“We gave the chance and it’s too many.
“The ball is there and in two or three passes, in five seconds, the ball is inside our box and it’s a penalty.”
Stats from BBC Sport:
Newcastle 1 Wolves 0– Friday 8 April 8pm
Wood 72 (pen)
Half-time stats in brackets.
Possession was Wolves 59% (50%) Newcastle 41% (50%)
Total shots were Wolves 5 (1) Newcastle 12 (5)
Shots on target were Wolves 2 (0) Newcastle 4 (0)
Corners were Wolves 2 (0) Newcastle 1 (0)
Referee: Peter Bankes
Crowd: 52,164 (3,000 Wolves)
Dubravka, Krafth, Schar, Burn, Targett, Shelvey, Guimaraes (Longstaff 88), Joelinton, Fraser (Almiron 13), Saint-Maximin (Murphy 90+5), Wood
Darlow, Dummett, Gayle, Ritchie, Manquillo, Lascelles
(Newcastle 1 Wolves 0 – Match ratings and comments on all the NUFC players – Read HERE)
(Newcastle 1 Wolves 0 – The three big points that I’m taking from the match – Read HERE)
(Newcastle 1 Wolves 0 – Instant NUFC fan / writer reaction to Friday night victory – Read HERE)
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