Leeds United 2-1 Bolton Wanderers

  • March 05, 2016 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/14a99

Bolton dropped back to the bottom of the Championship table and are now 10 points from safety, after losing 2-1 at Leeds United.

With pre-match attention focused on protests from home supporters outside the ground, hope was high that Wanderers would end an 11-month search for an away win by picking up three vital points at Elland Road.

That wasn't to materialise, however, as Mirco Antenucci netted either side of the break, ensuring a late consolation from substitute Kaiyne Woolery counted for nothing, as Trotters supporters begin to seriously contemplate life in League One next season.

Neil Lennon opted to name the same team that started against Burnley last time out, but was forced into making an alteration when Emile Heskey suffered an injury in the warm-up. Gary Madine came in at his expense, while academy graduate Alex Finney took up a place amongst the substitutes.

Wanderers started on the front foot at Elland Road, with Zach Clough shooting straight into the hands of Marco Silvestri from a Liam Feeney corner, after Darren Pratley's strike from the previous attack had been deflected behind.

Jay Spearing was next to try his luck for the visitors, with his long-range shot well held by Silvestri, while Souleymane Doukara, who was on target in the recent FA Cup tie at Macron Stadium, was inches away from poking the ball past former Leeds goalkeeper Paul Rachubka at the other end.

Lewie Coyle cut the ball back for Antenucci moments later, only for him to scuff a shot into the ground, shortly before Madine saw a shot charged down after neat play from Feeney.

Feeney was next to be denied, with Silvestri out quickly to charge down his effort after a Madine flick, while Josh Vela fired the rebound over the crossbar, before play was halted after Coyle came off worse from a 50/50 challenge with Spearing and had to leave the field on a stretcher - with Gaetano Berardi on to replace him.

Once play had resumed, Rachubka had to be at his absolute best to tip a long-range effort from Mustapha Carayol behind, before, on the half-hour, Berardi was fortunate to escape with a yellow card after hauling down Clough as he was about to embark on a clear run on goal.

Rob Holding fired over the bar from close range after getting on the end of a free-kick from Feeney, before the latter dragged a shot wide in a one-on-one situation only to be rescued by the assistant referee's offside flag.

Then, with six minutes to play before the break, Leeds went ahead as Carayol's corner was knocked into the path of Antenucci, who had the simple task of slotting home from inside the six-yard box.

Antenucci had the ball in the net again in the latter stages of the half, only to see his effort correctly ruled out for offside, but it was Wanderers who came closest to scoring in added time, with Liam Cooper clearing a Derik Osede header off the line to ensure Leeds went in at half-time with a one-goal advantage.

There was one change as the sides emerged for the start of the second period, with Leeds introducing Sol Bamba in place of Cooper.

Chances were at a premium inside the opening 15 minutes after the restart, with Osede firing over on the turn the only opportunity prior to Leeds doubling their advantage just after the hour.

After his initial cross was cleared right back to his feet, Antenucci took aim at goal and curled a delightful shot into the far corner beyond the reach of Rachubka.

Lennon responded by bringing Woolery and Liam Trotter on for Vela and Pratley, in a move that also saw Feeney drop to right-back, and the change made an instant impact.

Woolery, who netted a late winner against Rotherham United last month, utilised his pace to get inside the Leeds box and volley an inch-perfect cross from Dean Moxey past Silvestri to reduce the deficit back to one.

A sense of renewed belief now set in and Clough came close to equalising moments later, only to drag his shot wide from the edge of the box, before a wicked free-kick from Lewis Cook flashed right across the face of the Bolton goal.

Trotter and Dobbie, both on as substitutes, had strikes blocked inside the final five minutes, before a final chance fell the way of Holding, who could only succeed in heading over in added time as Leeds held out to claim a vital three points.

Defeat sees Bolton fall back to the base of the table and now 10 points adrift of safety, with 11 games remaining. They return to action on Tuesday, when Ipswich Town, who lie just one point outside the play-off places, are the visitors to Macron Stadium.

Leeds United: Silvestri, Coyle (Berardi 22), Bellusci, Cooper (Bamba 46), Taylor, Diagouraga, Bridcutt, Cook, Carayol (Dallas 79), Antenucci, Doukara
Subs Not Used: Murphy, Mowatt, Adeyemi, Peacock-Farrell
Booked: Berardi
Goals: Antenucci 39,62

Bolton Wanderers: Rachubka, Vela (Woolery 68), Osede, Holding, Moxey, Spearing, Pratley (Trotter 68), Davies, Feeney, Clough (Dobbie 84), Madine
Subs Not Used: Danns, Silva, Finney, Campbell
Goals: Woolery 74

Referee: Tony Harrington
Attendance: 21,070

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
2 Peterborough United 4 9
3 Portsmouth 4 8
4 Bolton Wanderers 4 8
5 Exeter City 4 7
6 Charlton Athletic 4 7
View Full Standings >>


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