Newcastle United 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1

Last updated : 09 May 2004 By Footymad Previewer

Inept Newcastle United slipped to a disappointing draw against relegated Wolves in their final home match of the season.

Fresh from their UEFA Cup exit against Marseille it was hoped that Wolves would be put to the sword as Newcastle fought it out with Liverpool for the all-important and lucrative fourth Champions' League place.

Instead Sir Bobby Robson's side were jeered from the pitch and faced the further indignity of completing their customary end of season salute to the fans in front of empty seats.

United did have the bonus of going in front through Lee Bowyer's first league goal for almost 19 months only to be pegged back after 71 minutes by Romanian substitute Ioan Ganea.

Shola Ameobi struck the foot of a post in the first half and then seven minutes from time skipper Alan Shearer had a penalty saved by Paul Jones.

Bowyer, Shearer and Ameobi were all denied by the outstanding Jones but that meant little to the usually ardent United fans, many of whom left before the final whistle.

Shearer was as forthright as ever when he said after the game: "It's been a dreadful week for us and a disappointing day." The skipper accepted the blame for the draw and added: "I accept responsibility for us not taking the three points. The keeper's pulled off a good save but you should score penalties.

"We're still not out of it but we now need to win our last two away games - at Southampton and Liverpool - and we've only won away twice this season. A betting man would bet against us." From the off United appeared lethargic before upping the tempo with the first bit of skill in the game after 38 minutes. Ameobi skipped by Mark Kennedy down the right and drilled over for Bowyer to side-foot beyond Jones.

Many expected the floodgates to open - but Jones had other ideas. The big keeper could only watch as another Ameobi run saw the post struck and Kennedy cleared Shearer's follow-up off the line.

Five minutes after the break Ameobi fired wide from just six yards as the home fans began to vent their frustration which was compounded after 71 minutes.

Kennedy cut in from the left and his shot deflected and hit Titus Bramble and Ganea drilled into the net from just inside the box.

Chances came and went before Paul Ince barged into the back of Gary Speed when going for a Hugo Viana corner and from the penalty Jones was the hero over Shearer.