Bolton Wanderers 1-1 Nottingham Forest

  • August 22, 2015 | By Chris Mann
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Stephen Dobbie struck in the final minute, as Bolton ended a run of six games without a goal with a 1-1 draw against Nottingham Forest at Macron Stadium.

Wanderers, once again, weren't shy in terms of goalmouth action but just couldn't force the ball over the line, a statement typified early in the second half when Gary Madine saw a penalty saved after Zach Clough had been bundled over by former Trotters captain Matt Mills.

David Vaughan came off the bench to smash an unstoppable 35-yard strike into the top corner with nine minutes to go, but Bolton earned a point when Dobbie, himself on as a substitute, drilled low past Dorus de Vries with just moments remaining.

Neil Lennon made two changes to the team that started against MK Dons on Tuesday, as Tom Walker and debutant Wellington Silva came in at the expense of the benched Josh Vela and Liam Feeney.

Neither side created anything of note in the early stages, with Forest intent on keeping possession in the middle of the park, and it took until the 14th minute until a chance arrived - with Dorian Dervite heading over the crossbar from a Dean Moxey cross.

Silva was causing Forest problems with his pace down the left-hand side, but it was Forest who had the next chance as Henri Lansbury fired over the top after finding space on the edge of the Bolton box.

Mark Davies dragged an effort wide of the target after a neat move which also involved Clough on 22 minutes, before the same player was involved at the other end to deny Ben Osborn a clean run on goal with a perfectly timed sliding challenge.

Dervite got on the end of another cross from Moxey as the game approached the final 10 minutes of the half, but once again failed to direct his header on target, while appeals for a penalty were turned down by match referee Carl Boyeson when Madine went down inside the box.

A glancing header from Clough sailed just wide of de Vries' far post in added time, as the two sides went in goalless at the interval.

There was one change to the home team as the players emerged for the start of the second period, as Feeney came on in place of Walker. Forest, meanwhile, started the half as they ended the first.

After setting a new club record of six games without a goal in all competitions on Tuesday, as well as matching a 117-year record of five consecutive league blanks, Bolton were handed the opportunity to take the lead when they were awarded a penalty five minutes into the half, as Clough was bundled over by Mills.

Madine took responsibility for the spot-kick, but de Vries guessed correctly and made the save down to his right.

That was the cue for Forest to up their game and they came close to scoring at the other end within three minutes, as a deflected free-kick from Lansbury just cleared Ben Amos' crossbar.

Silva hit a shot into the side netting on 57 minutes, as he reacted quickest to a blocked effort from Davies, while Madine headed wide moments later after rising highest to meet a cross from Feeney.

The visitors' best chance of the game arrived on the hour, as Michail Antonio raced unopposed into the Bolton box, but Amos was out quickly to make the save.

Tyler Walker saw a goalbound shot charged down by Prince-Desir Gouano shortly afterwards, moments before a fine move involving Silva and Davies ended with Clough bringing a save out of de Vries.

Dervite was next to be denied by de Vries, while further efforts from Neil Danns and Madine failed to trouble the Forest goalkeeper.

Antonio fired a long-range shot into the stands with 15 minutes to go, but Vaughan, who came on immediately following that attempt, went one better nine minutes from time as he picked out the top corner from 35 yards to break the deadlock.

Silva, who had earlier pulled up with what appeared to be a case of cramp, was brought off on 84 minutes and his replacement, Emile Heskey, headed straight at de Vries with his first touch of the match.

Five minutes of stoppage time were added at the end of the regulation 90, which started with Lennon introducing Dobbie in place of Clough - a change which paid instant dividends.

A summer signing from Crystal Palace, Dobbie received the ball 25 yards from goal and drilled a low effort that beat de Vries at his near post to lift the roof off a frustrated Macron Stadium.

Madine came close to connecting with a ball into the box from Feeney in the closing seconds, but Bolton greeted the final whistle with cheers of relief after they put an end to the club's worst-ever run in front of goal.

Lennon's side return to action on Friday, when they face Blackburn Rovers in a televised fixture at Ewood Park.

Bolton Wanderers: Amos, Wilson, Dervite, Gouano, Moxey, Danns, Davies, Silva (Heskey 84), Clough (Dobbie 90+1), Walker (Feeney 46), Madine
Subs Not Used: Vela, Spearing, Fitzsimons, Finney
Booked: Danns
Goals: Dobbie 90+4

Nottingham Forest: de Vries, Lichaj, Mills, Hobbs, Pinillos, Ebecilio (Vaughan 75), Mancienne, Antonio, Lansbury, Osborn (C Burke 58), Walker (Fox 86)
Subs Not Used: Wilson, Evtimov, O Burke, Grant
Booked: Mancienne, Lichaj, Mills, Walker
Goals: Vaughan 81

Referee: Carl Boyeson
Attendance: 16,410

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Pos Team Pld Pts
19 AFC Wimbledon 19 17
20 Tranmere Rovers 18 17
21 Milton Keynes Dons 19 14
22 Southend United 20 6
23 Bolton Wanderers 16 2
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