The Sponsors named combative midfielder Jay Spearing as their Man Of The Match. Spearing was a player I considered for our MOTM, he looked in good nick and has had a good pre-season behind him at Liverpool. He put in quite a few important tackles inside the Wanderers defensive third. The fans favourite was also tidy in possession and looked to get the Whites into attacking positions by bringing full-backs Alex Baptiste & Marc Tierney into the game as often as possible.
However, whilst Spearing was seemingly performing well, it was clear that Bolton were losing the midfield battle. This allowed Reading to control the territorial balance and led to their somewhat inevitable goal. Responsibility for this also falls on Darren Pratley, our goal scorer, and Medo Kamara, who also provided a threat going forward. On this basis I feel that none of these midfielders can be given the award.
Another Wanderer I feel deserves a mention is Alex Baptiste. The former Blackpool captain again looked confident in the right-back slot and dealt very well with the threat Reading offered on their left-side, particularly with the over-lapping former Manchester City left-back Wayne Bridge looking constantly to get forward and influence the game.
The stand-out performer for Bolton Wanderers was Hungarian International goalkeeper Adam Bogdan. A string of second half saves from the stopper was undoubtedly the key reason the Whites came out of this tough test with a point. In particular, the save from Adam Le Fondre late on, when all seemed lost, was spectacular and the under-fire goalkeeper deserves all the plaudits coming his way.
Many fans felt this was the Hungarians best game in a Bolton shirt & for me, none better come to mind. Freedman's focus should be our fragility in centre-back & hopefully we will not need to rely on the number one to do this for us frequently.