Port Vale manager Micky Adams said his side were made to pay for Tom Pope's first-half miss in the 3-0 loss at Wolves.
Vale should have taken the lead in the 25th minute when 13-goal Pope fired over the bar from 12 yards.
Wolves soon got into their groove with Bakary Sako opening the scoring. Two goals in two minutes from Nouha Dicko then earned the home side the points before Chris Neal saved Dicko's spot-kick late on.
"I was pleased with the first-half performance we got everything out of the boys that we wanted and we had the best chance," he admitted.
"But obviously once the first goal goes in it is disappointing after that.
"I think that there are key moments in games and when you are presented with a chance like we had, if you score it, it is a different game.
"Tom (Pope) doesn't need to apologise. It is a chance. He knows it. He has stuck them away in the past and he has missed them in the past. I think that is the life of a centre forward.
"In the second half we expected to be under a bit of pressure but unfortunately they got a bit of luck with their first goal and then the other two goals we can defend better.
"I just feel at the minute there is a bit of gear factor in us. Defensively I can understand it when you think of the quality of Sako and Dicko - at this level they are as good as anything you will see. We needed to cope with them better and we didn't do that in the second half.
"I always felt this was a 'free game' for us in many respects and that if we got something out of it we would have done well as they are on such a good run of form.
"Anyone coming here at this moment in time would find it very, very difficult. They do look like they are going to be promoted.
"But from our point of view our big game is Carlisle next week. It was always going to be a big game.
"We need people to stand up and be counted. My players have given their all this season and there are still some big games coming up for us.
"It is a blip at the moment. We just have to remain calm and get on with it."