Wolves defender Willy Boly scored a dramatic late equaliser as Newcastle were denied a precious victory in their battle against relegation from the Premier League.

Rafael Benitez’s visitors had appeared on course to move three points clear of the relegation zone courtesy of Isaac Hayden’s earlier strike at Molineux.

But as the game drifted beyond the minimum four minutes allocated for added time, Boly climbed above Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka to head in Adama Traore’s lofted cross.

Newcastle’s players and manager furiously appealed for a foul, with the former Porto defender appearing to have both arms on Dubravka. However, referee Graham Scott waved away their protests.

Benitez’s side went in front when Hayden found the bottom-right corner after collecting a fine pass from Fabian Schar and wrong-footing home goalkeeper Rui Patricio.

Wolves controlled proceedings in the first period and created several chances to score after the break, with Newcastle content to sit back and counter-attack.

When the hosts did break through, Matt Doherty and Raul Jimenez were guilty of close-range misses.

The result leaves Newcastle one point above the bottom three in 16th place while Wolves remain seventh.

Wolves may have controlled the tempo but Newcastle’s defensive resilience appeared to be paying off.

With 10 men often deployed behind the ball, they restricted the hosts to just two shots on target in the first half, laying a platform for them to build on after the break.

As they grew in confidence, Matt Ritchie and Schar were afforded the space to launch attacks down the wings.

It was Schar’s purposeful run that created their goal, the Swiss defender feigning to shoot and drawing Boly out of position. That allowed Hayden to receive the ball unmarked and fire home.

There were also some neat touches on show by Newcastle’s record signing Miguel Almiron, who was introduced for the final 18 minutes.

Yet having resisted intense Wolves pressure in the closing stages, they were undone by the game’s final act.

With Dubravka caught under a high cross, Boly climbed above him – briefly placing both arms on the Slovakian – and bundled the ball over the line.

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