Megson Thankful To Al Habsi

  • April 19, 2008 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton manager Gary Megson heaped praise on Ali Al Habsi after his side's 1-0 win at Middlesbrough.

The home side started strongly and would have taken an early lead had it not been for some fine saves from Al Habsi.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Megson admitted the Oman international did make a couple of mistakes, but more than made up for them with some tremendous stops.

"He (Al Habsi) is inexperienced and did a couple of daft things but that comes from experience," Megson said.

"It is no fault that he doesn't have that but in terms of technique and making saves he is very good, so despite knowing it is a blow not having Jussi we had no qualms about throwing him in," he said.

Gavin McCann later went on to score the only goal of the game to give the visitors only their second away win of the season, leaving the Wanderers boss with room for optimism ahead of the season's climax.

"I am not going to lie, it does a great deal, we can't deny we knew that (second half) was the biggest 45 minutes of our season," Megson continued.

"It is a big boost to us, three points away from home given the season we have had is going to be a massive boost.

"It is only our second win on the road, we only had probably six points before this and we have improved that somewhat now and all the things we did poorly in the first half, because we were beholden to the fact our keeper played exceptionally well, we did a lot better in the second half.

"We knew they (Middlesbrough) came out the blocks much better, they got on the front foot and got the momentum after just a minute or so and we were rocking.

"But we stood up to it; perhaps more luck than judgement and at half-time we knew we had to step it up to win at this level. And stepped it up we did and consequently everything we did in the second half was way better than the first half."

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Pos Team Pld Pts
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21 Tranmere Rovers 34 32
22 Southend United 35 19
23 Bolton Wanderers 34 14
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