Bolton Wanderers 1-2 Blackburn Rovers

  • January 13, 2008 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/e475d

Jason Roberts' stoppage time goal gave Blackburn all three points from their trip to the Reebok.

Kevin Nolan had given Bolton a first half lead with a superb volley before Christopher Samba's second half equaliser and Roberts' solo goal gave Rovers the points.

Wanderers went into the game looking for their fifth successive home league victory, despite defeat at the Reebok against Sheffield United in last weekend's FA Cup tie.

They carved out the first opportunity of the game with just five minutes on the clock. Ivan Campo's long throw was flicked into the danger area by Kevin Davies, but alert defending from Andre Ooijer prevented Bolton from taking the lead.

The visitors reacted positively and went straight down the other end, with David Bentley forcing Jussi Jaaskelainen into a comfortable save from 30-yards.

Bentley also had Rovers' next chance, curling a free-kick just over Jaaskelainen's cross bar after Benni McCarthy was fouled on the edge of the area.

Blackburn goalkeeper Brad Friedel had to be alert midway through the first half, intercepting a Tamir Cohen cross which was intended for Stelios Giannakopoulos.

The deadlock was finally broken just two minutes before the break with Bolton taking the lead courtesy of their captain.

Joey O'Brien's deep cross seemed to evade everybody, but Nolan had anticipated the ball and made a move to the back post, allowing him to volley past Freidel from just inside the area.

Mark Hughes' side began the second half brightly and Roque Santa Cruz would have had a good chance to equalise had it not been for a vital interception from Nolan.

Santa Cruz did have a clear sight of goal a couple of minutes later, finding himself behind the Wanderers back four, but his shot was parried to safety by Jaaskelainen.

Blackburn's pressure finally paid off when they equalised in the 53rd minute. Jaaskelainen opted to come for a Bentley corner, but the Finn missed the ball and Samba nodded home from six yards.

Campo was replaced by Gavin McCann just before the hour as Gary Megson looked for some aggression from his side.

The game seemed to be a complete midfield battle for the next ten minutes with neither side forcing either goalkeeper into a save, and Megson opted for an attacking change by bringing Christian Wilhelmsson on to replace Cohen.

But it was Rovers who had a great chance to take the lead on 70 minutes, but Pedersen's effort sailed just wide of the left hand post with Jaaskelainen beaten.

The largely ineffective McCarthy was replaced by Roberts for the final 15 minutes and the chance paid dividends for Hughes as the substitute won the game in stoppage time.

Roberts picked up the ball just inside his own half, shrugging off a challenge from Nolan before racing towards goal, easing past Lubomir Michalik and firing past Jaaskelainen courtesy of a slight deflection from Andy O'Brien.

The Wanderers players knew they had lost the game and some were left sat on the turf wondering what might have been as they slump back down towards the bottom three, lying three places clear of 18th placed Sunderland on goal difference alone.

Things don't get any easier for Bolton, as they travel to Newcastle United next weekend in search of their first away league victory of the season.

Bolton Wanderers: Jaaskelainen, J O'Brien, A O'Brien, Michalik, Gardner, Guthrie, Nolan, Campo (McCann 57), Cohen (Wilhelmsson 63), Giannakopoulos, Davies
Subs Not Used: Al Habsi, Hunt, Fojut
Booked: Campo, Cohen
Goals: Nolan 43

Blackburn Rovers: Freidel, Ooijer (Khizanishvili 73), Samba, Nelsen, Warnock, Bentley, Dunn, Reid, Pedersen, McCarthy (Roberts 77), Santa Cruz (Derbyshire 89)
Subs Not Used: Brown, Berner
Booked: Samba
Goals: Samba 53, Roberts 90

Attendance: 18,315
Referee: Mike Dean

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
15 Shrewsbury Town 26 30
16 Cambridge United 25 30
17 Bolton Wanderers 25 29
18 Lincoln City 25 28
19 Fleetwood Town 25 28
View Full Standings >>

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