WHO said the FA Cup has lost its glitz and glamour? This game was living proof that there's life in the old dog yet.

A below par Newcastle may have to wait another year to try to get their hands on the prestigious trophy, but they contributed to a third round thriller at a packed Molineux.

The Premiership side were on the wrong end of a shock 3-2 defeat at First Division Wolverhampton Wanderers - as League status went well and truly out of the window.

Before kick-off both sets of players walked onto the pitch to a firework display and it was to prove the spark to a spectacular game.

This was 90 minutes of football that had everything - and in the end a result which was exactly what Wolves deserved.

From the first whistle manager Dave Jones, under pressure after taking just five points from six games, had his players attacking their more fancied opponents.

Goals from Paul Ince and Mark Kennedy had given Wolves a two goal lead but Newcastle bounced back from a disastrous start to pull level through Jermaine Jenas and Alan Shearer.

But George Ndah's strike early in the second half ensured that Newcastle - with only two wins on their travels in nine games - continue to suffer and concede away from home.

There were too many under performing Newcastle stars, but that is not taking anything away from a Wolves side that always looked like progressing into round four.

Sunderland's FA Cup tie at Bolton might have had the pessimists writing off the competitoin, but surely those opinions will change after seeing this encounter.

Robson stuck to his word and did not risk midfielder Kieron Dyer., who has been struggling with a calf injury and did not travel with the rest of the squad.

But the boss did make one change to the side that beat Liverpool 1-0 on New Year's Day, Nolberto Solano came in for the unfortunate Brian Kerr, who dropped down to the bench, after recovering from concussion.

Wolves, in the middle of a striker crisis, had Dean Sturridge and top-scorer Nathan Blake out but there was a place in the middle of midfield for former Middlesbrough skipper Ince.

Both clubs, between them, boast winning the FA Cup on ten occasions, although neither have done so since 1960.

It is something Robson in particular was desperate to put right, in the knowledge that Newcastle lost two finals in 1998 and 1999 to Arsenal and Manchester United respectively.

But whatever Robson may have his eyes on, his side got off to the worst possible start.

Wolves started exactly how you would expect the underdog to start - with plenty of vibe and vigour.

And as usual it was self-styled Guv'nor Ince who was doing his best to ensure the hosts stamped their authority on the game.

On the front cover of the match-day programme, the picture of Ince standing cool against a wall suggested he knew something was going to happen. He was right.

As on six minutes Wolves took the lead through the man himself.

Mark Kennedy's deep cross was headed back across goal by ex-Sunderland defender Paul Butler, and Ince was on hand to strike a low first time shot beyond Shay Given.

Four minutes later Shearer headed wide but that would have been tough on Wolves who had started the far better side.

Newcastle were nervous at the back. Every time a cross was put into the penalty area the visitors looked distinctly dodgy.

Butler volleyed a corner wide; Colin Cameron somehow headed a Ndah cross straight at Given after being left in acres of space at the back post; it just seemed a matter of time before a second might come.

And the vociferous home crowd did not have to wait too long before being sent delirious, as goal number two arrived just before the half hour mark.

Goalkeeper Matt Murray's long throw out to Shaun Newton was played nicely to the lively Cameron.

He found space on the right before cutting the ball back to the on-rushing Kennedy, whose low shot flew past Given.

It was exactly what Wolves deserved for an action-packed opening but somehow it was to conspire that both sides would go in level at half-time.

Jenas was first to strike for Newcastle.

Bellamy's darting run into the penalty area led to the Welshman crossing to Shearer, whose shot was blocked and Jenas was on hand to head in on 40 minutes.

That goal put Newcastle, who had been outfought and ouplayed for most of the opening period, back into it and two minutes later Shearer blasted in a penalty past Murray, after referee Rob Styles had pointed to the spot.

Mr Styles adjudged that Wolves defender Joleon Lescott had pulled down Bellamy.

A second half like the first was going to be a hard act to follow - but the players had a good go at providing just that.

Four minutes after the restart Newcastle found a way past keeeper Murray again, but not past centre-back Lescott.

First Shearer's free-kick was blocked on the line by the big defender and then Lescott was on hand to block Clarence Acuna's rebound attempt.

And Wolves made their opponents pay just a minute later when they regained the lead.

Ndah, whose energy wreaked havoc all game, tapped in on the goal line after Newcastle failed to deal with Newton's back post header.

Lescott, Kenny Miller and Kennedy all went close, but the one-goal lead remained.

Bellamy, by far Newcastle's best performer, tried his best to grab an equaliser.

The £6m man got in behind the defence using his speed, but Murray saved well when a goal should have been scored.

And then Bellamy's ball across goal to LuaLua, who had only been on the field seconds, was met by the tricky striker but Lee Naylor cleared off the line, though replays suggested it could have been over the line.

But this was to be Wolves day and now Robson's men must respond by ensuring they claim a Champions League place next season.

Result: Wolverhampton Wanderers 3 Newcastle United 2.

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