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Bolton Wanderers 1-1 MK Dons - Player Ratings

A day in the sunshine left me feeling delirious and full of Haribo

Bolton v Everton U23 - EFL Checkatrade Trophy Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images

So Bolton Wanderers drew again. On one hand you could be forgiven for a sense of disappointment as we failed to put away a side in MK Dons who had had a poor start to the League One season. On the other hand, we didn't lose, and we remain top of the league.

My glass is most definitely half full. The bloke who sits behind me? He doesn't even have a glass - he was full of despair and anger. Guess it's hard to shake the patterns of the last five years.

Rambles and musings aside, here are my ratings you slags:

Mark Howard - 8

A quiet and confident performer. His penalty save was a highlight although at first glance I felt he might have done better for their goal - in hindsight that's a bit mean. I like him.

Lewis Buxton - 3

Hmm. I don't want to be too negative, but this lad worries me. His lack of pace is a huge problem, along with concerns about his and Vela's partnership which has echoes of Tyrone Mears and Mark Davies from days gone by.

Andrew Taylor - 7

Advised beforehand by a Reading fan that we were getting a steady eddie - Taylor did well without doing anything particularly well. Much better defensively than Buxton, although he didn't add much going forward - his crosses were appalling.

Mark Beevers - 8

Really standing out as one of our best and most important performers. Given Spearing's suspension, he is the only candidate for the captain's armband. Plus he took his goal well which given the chances we had from set pieces hints at future successes in that area.

David Wheater - 6

His performances have dropped off and he looks ever more like the slow, lumbering liability that played so terribly last season. He should have scored twice, and given his aerial prowess and power it's criminal that he hasn't troubled the score-keepers thus far.

Liam Trotter - 6

Another 'meh' sort of display from our best plodding midfielder. Neither one thing nor the other, his unwillingness to use his obvious physicality is a problem, and I wish he would use his obvious passing ability further forward when it matters. Was blowing out of his arse after 25mins too.

Josh Vela - 6

I was disappointed with Josh on Saturday. He failed to get forward as much as he has in recent weeks and was slow in getting the ball up to the attackers when he had the chance. He was also outpaced on more than one occasion which perhaps shouldn't come as a surprise given how slow he is. I hope for better performances on the horizon.

Jay Spearing - 8

I'm torn between giving him an 8 for his game, and a 2 for his discipline. On the field he was excellent and joined Beevers in being our best performer. However, this is tainted by another booking (5 in 7) which means he'll be suspended - which is irresponsible of him. I hope Derik Osede is brought in for the Millwall game.

James Henry - 6

Still looks way off being fit, but at the same time remains one of our better attackers. A bit of an iffy performance with hints to what might come. I like him at the tip of the diamond and I feel that once he and Keshi get in sync this could be a very fruitful partnership.

Jamie Proctor - 5

A lot of huffing and puffing, but Proctor was very disappointing for me. He spent most of the game out of position fighting against defenders - this is when he wasn't moaning - and I cannot remember him having a single shot on goal. He needs to be involved more where it matters.

Keshi Anderson - 5

As a consequence of Proctor's desire to seek the ball in areas where he should've left well alone, Keshi was isolated up front and therefore had little involvement. So whilst he wasn't terrible, he wasn't as dangerous as he was last week. What few chances he had were snatched at and wasted which perhaps point to inexperience.


Tom Thorpe - n/a - hipster doofus

Chris Taylor - n/a - didn't touch the ball

Sammy Ameobi - 5

A riddle wrapped in an enigma, Ameobi showed why he hasn't made much of his career to date. Rumours about his medical status abound, and whilst I can understand the attractiveness of his style of play, I just wonder whether he is going to be the new Wellington Silva of this team. His wild, unpredictable nature is going to either be thrilling or frustrating. He was the latter against MK Dons.

The Manager

Phil Parkinson - 6

A slightly lower score than I wanted to give, as his options were restricted by injuries, but I don't think Parkinson set us up in the best way to give us the best chance of winning. The diamond formation left us vulnerable and didn't offer as much support to the forwards as it might have done.

Still, despite my moaning, we are undefeated and we are top of the league, so what does it really matter.