Joelinton’s late miss at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday night proved costly as Newcastle United failed to secure all three points for the 19th time this season.
The Toon are now on the cusp of the Premier League relegation zone in 17th-place after three-straight winless affairs, having let a rare victory slip away after failing to bounce back again after Ruben Neves’ equaliser.
Newcastle had started the brighter of the two sides but they lost their way following injuries for Miguel Almiron and Allan Saint-Maximin, who join top-scorer Callum Wilson and defenders Fabian Schar and Javier Manquillo in the treatment room.
United still had chances to seal only a third win in their last 15 top-flight games but were punished by Joelinton producing a costly miss in the dying stages.
The Brazilian had the better of Wolves goalkeeper Rui Patricio from 12-yards out after being found in an open pocket of space in the heart of the visitors’ box by Jacob Murphy, only for Romain Saiss to block his effort on the line and see the ball loop over the crossbar.
Joelinton’s strike marked one of three efforts taken on Saturday night, no Newcastle player took more, but failed to turn either home despite finding the target each time to remain on a single goal for the Premier League season, per WhoScored.
Bruce could only rue United’s number of missed chances to score against the Molineux natives, having seen the Magpies take 19 shots as a team but only find the net with one of seven on-target attempts.
“It’s the same story, if you create chances but don’t take them, in the Premier League you’ll get punished,” Bruce said, via quotes by Chronicle Live, following the 1-1 draw. “We’ve had three wonderful chances and then one with Joelinton with 10 minutes to go.”
Newcastle cannot afford to see chances like Joelinton’s go to waste given their peril at the bottom end of the Premier League table, with the Brazilian’s timid finishing only serving to hold United back in their quest for safety.
It was a much more productive performance from the £18m-rated flop, signed for a club-record £40m in 2018, who offered three shots and direct each on target, compared to his average 0.6 from 1.3 efforts per game in the top-flight this term, per WhoScored.
But with Wilson still out for the next three to four weeks, Bruce had to see Joelinton take up the burden and instead only witnessed the 24-year-old miss a huge chance to seal a much-needed win. His miss could have cost the Toon all three points too, had Martin Dubravka not been positioned well to deny Fabio Silva in stoppage-time.
Dubravka was done no favours by Isaac Hayden in the lead-up to Wolves’ equalising effort, as he failed to track Neves as he moved to meet Pedro Neto’s cross.
Yet the midfielder can be somewhat pardoned, given he was shifted to right-back following Emil Krafth’s injury but without receiving the instructions soon enough – much to the frustration of captain Jamaal Lascelles.