Stoke City 2-0 Bolton Wanderers

  • March 04, 2009 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton fell to defeat on their first visit to the Britannia Stadium, losing 2-0 against relegation threatened Stoke City.

Goals in either half from James Beattie and substitute Ricardo Fuller gave Tony Pulis' side all three points, moving them out of the bottom three.

Wanderers began the game bright and could have taken the lead inside ten minutes, but Thomas Sorensen was alert to tip Johan Elmander's effort over the bar from a Matt Taylor cross.

But the home side responded almost immediately and found themselves infront on 14 minutes as Beattie ran between two defenders to strike Glenn Whelan's through ball past Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Bolton were seeing more of the ball than usual, but failed to cut through the Potters' backline and restricted to keeping the ball in their own half.

Taylor saw a half volley saved by Sorensen before Ryan Shawcross went close for the hosts, heading just over the bar from a Liam Lawrence free-kick.

Former Bolton defender Abdoulaye Faye went close on 42 minutes, but he too headed over from a Lawrence free-kick.

Moments before the break, Wanderers came close to an equaliser, but Sorensen just managed to turn Taylor's free-kick round the post as Stoke took their lead into the interval.

During the break, heavy snow came down around the Britannia Stadium but by the time the players came out for the second half, it had calmed down enough for the game to continue.

In an attempt to cut down on Stoke's time wasting, referee Mike Dean banned Rory Delap from using a towel to dry the ball prior to his long-throws and moments later he landed one on top of Jaaskelainen's goal.

Fuller, having come on as a substitute, saw a shot blocked just after the hour, but Bolton were still dangerous from set-pieces at the other end, as Mark Davies forced a save from Sorensen.

But, with 73 minutes gone, Stoke sealed the points. Bolton failed to clear another Delap throw and after Jaaskelainen had parried a shot from Whelan, Fuller reacted quickest to score from close range.

Ibrahima Sonko saw a header come back off the crossbar inside the final ten minutes before Sorensen palmed away a smart volley from Elmander in stoppage time.

Pulis' men held on for an ultimately comfortable victory, lifting them out of the bottom three, while Bolton drop into the bottom half.

Stoke City: Sorensen, Wilkinson (Sonko 72), Shawcross, Abdoulaye Faye, Higginbotham, Lawrence, Whelan, Diao (Amdy Faye 66), Delap, Sidibe (Fuller 56), Beattie
Subs Not Used: Simonsen, Pugh, Tonge, Camara
Booked: Lawrence, Wilkinson
Goals: Beattie 14, Fuller 73

Bolton Wanderers: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson (Makukula 80), Cahill, A O'Brien, Samuel, M Davies, Muamba (Gardner 64), McCann, Taylor, K Davies, Elmander
Subs Not Used: Al Habsi, Shittu, Smolarek, Puygrenier, Basham
Booked: A O'Brien

Attendance: 26,319
Referee: Mike Dean

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Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
19 Rochdale 32 33
20 AFC Wimbledon 33 31
21 Tranmere Rovers 32 26
22 Southend United 33 16
23 Bolton Wanderers 31 11
View Full Standings >>


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