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Posted Fri 11 Jan 13 at 21:36 PM

Wolves 1-1 Rovers

Gary Bowyer couldn't make it four wins from his four games in charge, but he ended his reign unbeaten after a feisty draw at Molineux.

Jordan Rhodes set Rovers on their way when he converted a 26th minute penalty after Ruben Rochina was felled in the box.

The home side, playing under new boss Dean Saunders for the first time, rallied in the second half and levelled with sixteen minutes to go when Roger Johnson headed home Jamie O'Hara's cross at the back post.

There was no quarter given in a match littered with fouls and bookings, a draw the fair result.



Two changes were made for Gary Bowyer's final game as caretaker manager. Todd Kane, the loan arrival from Chelsea, was in for his debut as the injured Adam Henley missed out.

The other change saw Simon Vukcevic return to the starting eleven with Diogo Rosado dropping to the bench.

Urged on by new manager Dean Saunders, the home side started the stronger of the two at a chilly Molineux Stadium.

An early inswinging corner was cleared as far as Roger Johnson but he put his effort wide. Following that Todd Kane dealt with a Jake Cassidy ball across the area well, David Davis firing over from outside the box as he latched onto the clearance.

As the half wore on Rovers started to come more into the game. Kane, advancing from right back, fed Simon Vukcevic and his cross was headed goalwards by Jordan Rhodes but it was easily claimed by Carl Ikeme.

Moments later Rhodes had a better chance from Jason Lowe's hopeful ball forward. As Ikeme hesitated, the Rovers' top scorer gave chase but his clip past the advancing 'keeper lacked power and accuracy.

Wolves responded with an excellent chance of their own when a ball in from the left was deflected off Grant Hanley and into the path of Kevin Foley, Jake Kean showing impressive reactions to push the shot aside from close-range.

Just past the midway point Rovers were handed the opportunity to take the lead when Ruben Rochina was fouled in the area by Bakary Sako. The Spaniard had collected a free-kick from Vukcevic before taking the ball round two players in the area only to be tripped by a third. The linesman having no doubt that an offence had been committed.

After a delay it was left to Jordan Rhodes to take the kick and he made no mistake from 12 yards, steering the ball beyond the despairing dive of Carl Ikeme into the bottom corner of the net for his 14th in a Rovers shirt this season.

The visitors had the chance of a second on 39 minutes when following good work from Colin Kazim-Richards saw him tee up Rochina but his shot was straight at the Wolves goalkeeper.

Rovers had to withstand some pressure from the home side as the half drew to a close but the Rovers defence held firm to lead at the break.


The second half saw Rovers start lively with when a lovely through ball from Danny Murphy set Rochina running through, but the Spaniard's well-struck shot was tipped aside by Carl Ikeme.

Wolves rallied, Jake Cassidy seeing a shot deflected for a corner and from it Bakary Sako saw his inswinger headed off the line by the Rovers captain.

The home side were building up a head of steam, Johnson headed on the roof of the net from Sako's free-kick to the back post.

Todd Kane was lively on his debut and after Morten Gamst Pedersen's lay-off he charged through but his shot was off target.

With just over 15 minutes to go Wolves got the equaliser their second half display deserved. A short free-kick saw Jamie O'Hara deliver to the back post where Roger Johnson arrived to head into the net.

Sensing a turnaround the home fans roared on their side, the dangerous Sako drilling the ball across the area only for it to strike the hapless Kevin Doyle and bounce behind.

That was one let-off  and then another would follow as Martin Olsson, one of eight players booked, received a talking to after bringing down Slawomir Peszko.

Five additional minutes were shown which could have seen lesser teams buckle under the pressure, but Rovers are built of sterner stuff these days and played out time comfortable to claim a share of the spoils.

After the final whilst the visiting fans stood and applauded as Gary Bowyer came over to show his appreciation, the reserve-team boss has enjoyed his tenure in charge.

Rovers are back in action a week on Saturday when Michael Appleton will be at the helm for the start of a new era at the club.

WOLVES: Ikeme, Henry (c), Sako, Ward, Johnson, Berra, Zubar (sub Peszko 67 mins), Davis (sub O'Hara 74 mins), Doyle, Foley, Cassidy (sub Ebanks-Blake 79 mins).

Subs not used: De Vries (GK), Stearman, Batth, Forde.

Goals: Johnson 74 mins.

Booked: Henry, Davis, O'Hara, Doyle.

ROVERS: Kean, Kane, Dann, Hanley (sub Givet 82 mins), Martin Olsson, Vukcevic (sub Pedersen 57 mins), Lowe, Murphy (c), Rochina (sub Morris 80 mins), Kazim-Richards, Rhodes.

Subs not used: Usai (GK), Nuno Gomes, Goodwillie, Rosado.

Goals: Rhodes pen 26 mins.

Booked: Kazim-Richards, Murphy, Olsson, Pedersen.

Attendance: 20,264

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