Bolton Wanderers’ wait for the first league win since March continues, as a late goal from Aidan McGeady rescued a point for promotion favourites Sunderland at the UNIBOL.
Jack Hobbs had put Wanderers in front five minutes into the second half with a close range finish & it looked as if it would be the winner, though a Black Cats penalty in stoppage time spared their blushes.
Going into the match, Keith Hill named an unchanged side from the team that drew with Oxford United 0-0.
After keeping his first clean of the season against Oxford, Remi Matthews was called into action early on. With George Dobson racing through on goal, Matthews reacted well to race off his line to smother the ball.
Wanderers grew into the game and had chances to take the lead. Ali Crawford hit a shot straight at McLaughlin, then top goalscorer Dennis Politic had the best chance of the half to give Wanderers the lead. Cutting in from the right, Politic hit a superb curling effort that had McLaughlin beaten, sadly it struck the post before being cleared away.
Will Grigg somehow headed wide, though Sunderland were second best in the first half.
Five minutes into the second half, Wanderers took the lead.
Ali Crawford’s free kick was headed across goal by Will Buckley into the path of Jack Hobbs, who fired the ball into the roof of the net from close range.
Sunderland could have been level almost immediately though Luke O’Nien, though Remi Matthews was on hand to deny the midfielder.
Wanderers continued to defend valiantly as Sunderland chased an equaliser. Tom Flanagan struck the bar with a header & Matthews pulled off two more stunning saves to deny McGeady & Gooch respectively.
Wanderers were forced into an unplanned substitution, as Yoan Zouma was brought on with just over ten minutes to go to replace the injured Jake Wright.
Unfortunately for Zouma, he would hand (no pun intended) Sunderland a huge lifeline in stoppage time.
Referee Ollie Yates awarded Sunderland a late penalty after Zouma was adjudged to have handled in the area.
McGeady, who had missed his last penalty earlier in the week, made no mistake this time, firing the ball into the corner to rescue a point for the visitors.
Wanderers remain bottom of the table on -9 points, though the performances in the two games this week will give fans huge hope that the elusive first win of the season will be coming soon.