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Match Report: Bolton Wanderers v Middlesborough

Chris tries to forget, but is forced to remember

Stu Forster

Bolton Wanderers now-traditionally slow start to the season continued last night as they meekly surrendered a one goal lead to eventually lose to Middlesbrough in what was the most comprehensive 2-1 battering that you'll ever see.

Wanderers began the game well, though Middlesbrough looked comfortable with neither Bogdan nor the flashy Boro keeper (Mr TV save 2014) having a save to make.

Gradually, Wanderers fought their way into the game and took the lead when Craig Davies thumped home a penalty that he himself won after being fouled when through on goal.

In a baffling display of decision making, shithouse referee Steve Martin compounded the misery sustained by this writer having sat through his Pink Panther movie by refusing to send off the Boro defender, whose name escapes me - instead issuing only a yellow.

Wanderers suffered at the hands of Martin on the brink of HT when Wheater was adjudged to have handled in his own area, with short-arse whingebag Grant Leadbetter sending Boggers the wrong way to even things up.

The second half belonged to Boro, as they dominated midfield and forced the Wanderers keeper into a few routine but challenging saves.

Then with just 10 minutes to go, expensive Spanish striker Kike struck a scuffed effort past Bogdan with the help of a deflection to make it 2-1 to the visitors.

This prompted the lethargic and gutless Wanderers manager Dougie Freedman into a couple of changes, which I reckon he wouldn't have made ordinarily.

For some unknown reason, the clown took off his most effective forward, Davies, and threw Wheater up front. His latest best mate, Joe Mason, remained on the pitch despite not touching the ball for an hour. At least we won't have to wash his kit.

Fellow sub Jermaine Beckford put the ball in the net late on, but the dickhead ref found a mystery foul somewhere and blew his whistle.

Wanderers left the pitch to a chorus of boos, and yet more waffle from their increasingly beleaguered manager in the post-match press conference.

When will this torment end?

Bolton manager Dougie Freedman:

"We then gave them a present just before half-time and then in the second half we gave it a right good go and gave it our all.

"But the brutal truth is, if you don't take your opportunities when they come your way and you don't concentrate on defending, you're not going to win games of football.

"Right now we cannot afford to give teams gifts and I think that's what we gave them to let them back in the game."

Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka on goalscorer Kike:

"Kike is very important for the team but I said the same thing after our first game at home to Birmingham. Today the most important thing was the performance of the team.

"It's the same for Kike. He's only been here one month and he has to keep working to improve every day because we know how difficult this competition is."

"Without the work of all the lads it would have been impossible for him to score that goal.

"He's very important and the other lads know that when we work and create a chance, he's going to be there and he's going to score. We have to now keep going in the same way and keep working.

The Teams

Bolton Wanderers

1 Adam Bogdan
2 Kevin McNaughton (White - 94' )
31 Wheater (Booked)
5 Tim Ream
4 Matt Mills
6 Jay Spearing
7 Liam Feeney (Booked)
17 Liam Trotter (Danns - 83' )
27 Lee Chung-yong
9 Joe Mason
28 Craig Davies (Beckford - 83' )

10 Jermaine Beckford
14 Dorian Dervite
18 Neil Danns
21 Darren Pratley
24 Andy Lonergan
33 Hayden White
44 Medo Kamara


40 Mejias Osorio
22 Omeruo (Booked)
2 Abella Perez
15 Hines (Booked)
3 Friend (Booked)
8 Clayton (Ayala - 79' )
7 Leadbitter
24 Nsue Lopez (Reach - 63' )
27 Adomah
9 Garcia Martinez
10 Tomlin (Whitehead - 89' )

04 Ayala
13 Konstantopoulos
14 Williams
17 Husband
18 Whitehead
20 Reach
30 Fewster

Ref: Steve Martin
Att: 13,847