Cardiff City restored their eight-point lead in the Championship yesterday as two more goals from Fraizer Campbell increased the fear of back-to-back relegations for Wolves, whose Swansea-born manager, Dean Saunders, has yet to win in eight matches in charge.
Campbell, signed for £650,000 from Sunderland last month, is beginning to look a real bargain after a header in each half made it five goals in five games since his move. After three consecutive play-off failures, the possibility of top-flight football for Cardiff for the first time since 1962 is growing.
Wolves' momentum is pulling them in the opposite direction, with the third tier looming large. Saunders saw reasons to be optimistic in their performance but their downward spiral goes back beyond the current run of 11 league matches without a win.
They briefly topped the Premier League in August 2011, but since then have won only 12 league matches from 69.
Both Cardiff goals were avoidable from a Wolves point of view. For the first, they failed to defend a long throw, which Ben Turner flicked on for Campbell to nod in unchallenged. In the second, Campbell outjumped goalkeeper Carl Ikeme for Craig Bellamy's free-kick.
Wolves did quickly pull one back when a Bakary Sako free-kick beat David Marshall with the aid of a deflection but Sylvain Ebanks-Blake then missed a glorious chance from a Sako cross, the ball ballooning over the bar after he had thumped it into the ground.
"Apart from two catastrophic mistakes I thought we did not give them another chance in the first half and had Sylvan's chance gone in we could have gone on and won the game," Saunders said.
His opposite number, Malky Mackay, said: "This was a massive win. I think another five or six will see us over the line."
Wolverhampton Wanderers (3-5-1-1): Ikeme; Batth (Ebanks-Blake, h-t) Johnson, Gorkss; Doherty (Foley, 78) Doumbia (Doyle, h-t), Henry, O'Hara, Robinson; Sako; Sigurdarson. Substitutes not used De Vries (gk), Ward, Davis, Edwards.
Cardiff City (4-3-1-2) Marshall; Connolly, Hudson (McNaughton, 75), Turner, Taylor; Cowie (Kim, 80), Whittingham, Conway; Gunnarsson; Campbell (Helguson, 82), Bellamy. Substitutes not used Lewis (gk), Mutch, Noone, Mason.
Referee S Attwell (Warwickshire).