Bolton Wanderers 2-1 Blackpool

  • January 04, 2014 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton moved into the fourth round of the FA Cup for the fifth successive season, after beating Blackpool 2-1 at the Reebok Stadium.

David Ngog opened the scoring with a superb solo effort 10 minutes in, but Blackpool were level at the break as Tom Barkhuizen's stunning goal was allowed to stand - despite calls that a visiting striker was standing in an offside position as the ball made its way towards goal.

It didn't affect the final result, however, as Ngog laid the ball on a plate for Jermaine Beckford to slide home six minutes after the restart and book Wanderers' place in the next round of the competition.

Dougie Freedman made five changes to the side that drew at home to Middlesbrough on New Year's Day, with Ngog, Beckford, Neil Danns, Andre Moritz and Medo Kamara taking the places of Lee Chung-Yong, Joe Mason, Jay Spearing, Mark Davies and Darren Pratley.

Both sides had early sighters, with Angel firing wide inside the opening minute for Blackpool, while Beckford also missed the target at the other end moments later.

Matthew Gilks saved from Moritz soon after, before Alex Baptiste, playing against his former club, forced the goalkeeper into another smart stop with nine minutes gone.

60 seconds later, Bolton were in front. A smart one-two left Ngog bearing down on the Blackpool box. He calmly strode forward 30 yards, before prodding the ball into the top corner from the edge of the area.

Not content with their lead, Wanderers went in search of a second and it almost arrived two minutes later, as Zat Knight's flick into the box was turned wide by an overhead kick from Beckford.

Matt Mills was fortunate not to slice the ball into his own net at the midway stage of the half, while Moritz and Chris Eagles were denied at the other end by a combination of Gilks and his defenders.

Moritz directed a free-kick inches wide of the target with 25 minutes played, before the game started to calm down as Paul Ince's side began to take more control in possession.

Tom Ince flashed a shot past the far post just after the half-hour, before Neal Bishop's low cross almost found a way into the bottom corner of Andy Lonergan's net.

Blackpool's increased pressure finally paid off in the final minute of the half, as Barkhuizen's curling strike from the right-hand side flew into the top corner. There was uncertainly surrounding the goal, as the referee's assistant had raised his flag, but the referee made the decision to allow the goal and the two sides went in level at the break.

There were no changes to either side at the start of the second half, as both teams enjoyed early attempts on goal. Jack Robinson brought a good save out of Lonergan with a low cross in the opening minute of the second period, before Moritz curled an effort just wide of the target at the other end. Angel also came close to scoring for the visitors, but Bolton managed to scramble the ball clear.

With six minutes of the second half played, Wanderers were back in front. Ngog showed fantastic effort and strength to outmuscle the Blackpool defender and he played the ball across the six-yard box, where Beckford was sliding in to turn the ball past a stranded Gilks.

Eagles came agonisingly close to creating a two-goal cushion on the hour. After receiving the ball from Tim Ream, he turned 25 yards from goal and fizzed a shot inches wide of Gilks' left-hand post.

With little over 20 minutes to go, Beckford, usually so reliant in the attacking box, was on hand to clear off the line, as Chris Basham's header looked set to find the back of the net against his former club.

Lonergan saved from Ince moments later, before Basham headed against the post with the goal at his mercy.

Chung-Yong, who had come on to replace Beckford, came close to sealing the victory with 12 minutes to go, but his half-volley came back off a combination of the post and underside of the crossbar before Blackpool managed to clear the ball to safety.

Wanderers were hanging on in the final 10 minutes, as Lonergan pushed away a cross-cum-shot that was destined for the bottom corner, before flying across his goal to deny Robinson a spectacular long-range goal.

Danns saw a shot blocked in stoppage time, while Baptiste sliced an effort across the face of goal, but Blackpool failed to trouble Bolton as they kept possession well in the dying stages to book their place in the fourth round of the FA Cup.

The fourth round ties will take place on the weekend of 25/26 January 2014, meaning Wanderers' Championship fixture against Burnley will be played at a later date. Freedman's side return to action next Saturday, when Nottingham Forest are the visitors to the Reebok Stadium.

Bolton Wanderers: Lonergan, Baptiste, Ream, Mills, Knight, Kamara, Danns, Moritz (Pratley 80), Beckford (Chung-Yong 71), Ngog, Eagles (Vela 87)
Subs Not Used: Hall, White, Bolger, Lee-Barrett
Booked: Danns
Goals: Ngog 10, Beckford 51

Blackpool: Gilks, Bishop, Robinson, Ferguson, Mackenzie, Cathcart, Basham, Martinez (Chopra 81), Fuller, Barkhuizen (Eccleston 66), Ince
Subs Not Used: Davies, Warner, Caton, Harris, Thurston
Goals: Barkhuizen 45

Referee: Simon Hooper
Attendance: 11,180

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Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
19 Rochdale 34 36
20 AFC Wimbledon 35 35
21 Tranmere Rovers 34 32
22 Southend United 35 19
23 Bolton Wanderers 34 14
View Full Standings >>


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