Milijas draws on World Cup promise to fire-up Wolves

Wolves 2 Bolton Wanderers 1

Nenad Milijas' name does not lend itself to Black Country songs of praise and he may never join Steve Bull and Billy Wright in having a stand named in his honour at Molineux. Yet he played a pivotal role in a victory for Wolves to underline the power of the World Cup to concentrate minds.

Barely 24 hours after his country, Serbia, were drawn to meet Germany, Australia and Ghana next summer, Milijas put behind him a staccato start to Premier League life. After creating a goal to give Wolves the impetus they craved in their bottom-three battle against Bolton, he positively bludgeoned the second.

During the Serbs' progress from their group ahead of France, the 26-year-old partnered Dejan Stankovic, who went from the same Belgrade suburb to Serie A. However, his international coach, Raddy Antic, must have been uneasy about his lack of first-team action since a £2.6m move from Red Star Belgrade.

Milijas is confident he would have gone to South Africa irrespective of club form. Asked whether he had to play every week to keep his place, he replied: "I don't have that problem. I need to train well and be fit and healthy. I just want to give 100 per cent of myself but if I'm not playing, I don't think it's so much of a problem."

Antic may not espouse such a laissez-faire approach and, like Wolves' manager, Mick McCarthy, his delight was doubtless tempered by relief. Milijas played down his contribution, which began when a wickedly whipped-in free-kick made a goal for Jody Craddock, who was in an offside position, and culminated with a swerving 30-yard shot that left Jussi Jaaskelainen clawing air.

"The win was the most important thing because there was big pressure on this team (after losing to Birmingham)," Milijas said.

Though Gary Megson is close to chairman Phil Gartside, the team's downward spiral must be prompting boardroom concern. They started playing only after Johan Elmander's close-range finish, their belated siege allowing the United States' No 3 goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann to remind World Cup rivals England that the Americans excel in at least one position.

Wolverhampton Wanderers (4-4-2): Hahnemann; Stearman, Craddock, Berra, Ward; Edwards (Mancienne, 84), Henry, Milijas, Jarvis; Doyle, Ebanks-Blake (Maierhofer, 80). Substitutes not used: Hennessey (gk), Keogh, Surman, Foley, Castillo.

Bolton Wanderers (4-5-1): Jasskelainen; Steinsson, Cahill, A O'Brien, Samuel (Elmander, 71); Yong-Lee, Gardner, McCann, Cohen, Taylor; Klasnic. Substitutes not used: Al Habsi (gk), Ricketts, M Davies, Knight, Elmander, Obadeyi, Muamba.

Referee: C Foy (Merseyside).

Booked: Wolves Stearman, Hahnemann; Bolton McCann.

Man of the match: Milijas.

Attendance: 27,362.

The Banksy image in Folkestone before it was vandalised
Life and Style

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts

football West Brom vs Man Utd match report: Blind grabs point, but away form a problem for Van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Bloom Time: Mira Sorvino
tvMira Sorvino on leaving movie roles for 'The Intruders'
First woman: Valentina Tereshkova
peopleNASA guinea pig Kate Greene thinks it might fly
Brian Harvey turned up at Downing Street today demanding to speak to the Prime Minister

Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

Chris Grayling, Justice Secretary: 'There are pressures which we are facing but there is not a crisis'

Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?

Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Life and Style
The charity Sands reports that 11 babies are stillborn everyday in the UK
lifeEleven babies are stillborn every day in the UK, yet no one speaks about this silent tragedy
Blackpool is expected to become one of the first places to introduce the Government’s controversial new Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs)

Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination

Life and Style
Northern soul mecca the Wigan Casino
fashionGone are the punks, casuals, new romantics, ravers, skaters, crusties. Now all kids look the same
Life and Style

I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Salisbury ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities

The city is home to one of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta, along with the world’s oldest mechanical clock
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album