Being booed off is nothing new to Wolverhampton Wanderers this season. Failing to bring a single save from a visiting goalkeeper is more damning altogether and that is what made their second consecutive goalless draw so unpalatable.
An unbeaten run now stretching to six matches is scant consolation and their manager, Glenn Hoddle, admitted: "We didn't deserve more than a point. There was always a hesitancy about our game. It was very disappointing and it feels like we lost. Now we have to win against Cardiff on Saturday."
The manager had warned that two games in four days might be too much for Paul Ince but the 38-year-old's breather on the substitutes' bench lasted only 12 minutes before he joined the muddled proceedings on a saturated pitch, deemed playable only an hour and a half before kick-off, after Darren Anderton had departed with a pulled hamstring
Wolves' opening urgency soon gave way to waywardness and sloppiness. The initially impressive Jérémie Aliadière missed with an overhead kick when Lee Naylor's free-kick was only partially dealt with by Steve Simonsen, then Kenny Miller drove over from Ince's free-kick. The promotion chasers mustered little else.
Stoke City, for a side beaten in their previous five Championship trips, were decent. Paul Gallagher's skidding 20-yarder was comfortably saved just before half-time and Clint Hill lunged in on Gallagher's superb 53rd-minute free-kick to send a header against the bar, possibly via Stefan Postma's fingertips.
"It was a good point for us," said the Stoke assistant manager, Jan de Koning. "We did very well, especially defensively.'"
Wolverhampton Wanderers (4-3-3): Postma; Ross, Edwards, Lescott, Naylor; Anderton (Ince, 12), Rosa (Ricketts, 64), Kennedy; Aliadière, Cort, Miller. Substitutes not used: Oakes (gk), Gyepes, Frankowski.
Stoke City (4-3-3): Simonsen; Hoefkens, Hill, Duberry, Broomes; Brammer, Skoko (Junior, 82), Russell; Chadwick, Bangoura, Gallagher. Substitutes not used: Sidibe, Sweeney, de Goey (gk), Buxton.
Referee: B Curson (Leicestershire).
* Preston North End's visit to Plymouth ended goalless, Paul Nugent failing to score twice for the visitors, first in front of an open goal and later sending a header wide.Reuse content