With the scores still tied at 0-0 on Saturday at the Reebok Stadium, Bolton Wanderers received a bit of a lucky break in completely unfortunate circumstances. The Trotters were playing with ten men due to Jay Spearing being forced to retreat into the locker room to receive stitches after receiving a cut right above his eye. It was a five minute span in which Bolton were forced to play a man down, having already used two of their three substitutes.
With Spearing away from the pitch, new boy Neil Danns was sent through the warm up motions by Dougie Freedman and looked as though he would be introduced into the match. The substitution would have left Bolton Wanderers up a proverbial creek without the proverbial paddle and luckily, it didn't happen with Jay Spearing emerging from the tunnel wearing a large bandage on his head.
It's a good thing it didn't because it would have left Wanderers with just ten men for the match's remaining 25 minutes through no fault of their own. It was a few moments prior to the 65th minute that Marc Tierney entered into a 50/50 challenge with Everton loanee Shane Duffy that left him the loser. The Bolton left back, the only one with senior experience in that position on the books, was left writhing in pain, holding his leg. The injury forced an immediate substitution that saw Zat Knight enter the match as a center back with Tim Ream sliding to the left.
The defender underwent scans after the fact and the results are back. Marc Tierney has suffered a fracture in his foot, meaning that he will miss quite some time for Bolton Wanderers.
The lack of depth at left back was an issue that we identified prior to the season in that there is no backup for Tierney. The only other natural left back on the roster is Andy Kellett, who recently made the bench for a league match but who has also never made a senior appearance for the whites. There are secondary options available but none are anywhere near as strong as Marc Tierney, who has been one of Bolton's most consistent performers in an otherwise awful season.