Bolton Wanderers 3-0 Peterborough United

  • April 30, 2017 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton Wanderers won promotion to the Championship, after brushing aside Peterborough United to secure the League One runners-up position.

Knowing a draw was likely to be enough to confirm 2nd place, Wanderers went in search of all three points and went ahead midway through the first half when Jem Karacan turned home a cross from Dorian Dervite on the volley.

David Wheater headed home a second within eight minutes of the restart, before Adam Le Fondre got the party started when he slotted in a third 15 minutes from time following a surging run from Josh Vela.

Celebrations were temporarily put on hold when supporters rushed onto the pitch in stoppage time. After allowing play to resume for the final 30 seconds, referee Scott Duncan called time and confirm Bolton's place back in the second-tier after just one season away.

Fleetwood Town's failure to beat Port Vale meant Wanderers would have been promoted regardless of their result, but Phil Parkinson's side clinched it in style as the club, after years of struggle, hit the headlines for all the right reasons.

Following victory at Port Vale last time out, Parkinson decided to stick with the same team as he looked to become the first Bolton manager to guide them to immediate promotion following a relegation since Colin Todd, whose Wanderers team made it to the Premier League in 1996/97 after one year in Division One.

The first chance of the game fell the way of the hosts, but Karacan couldn't keep his volley down from the edge of the box as Peterborough were granted a reprieve.

Gary Madine was next to try his luck, forcing Luke McGee into a smart reaction save with his foot, but it wasn't long until the ball was in the Peterborough net as Karacan picked the perfect moment to score his first goal for the club.

After Filipe Morais' initial cross was blocked, Dervite whipped a ball to the far post where Karacan was left unmarked to calmly volley into the corner and turn a nervy atmosphere inside the Macron into one of sheer joy.

Peterborough looked certain to get themselves back on level terms on 36 minutes but Mark Beevers slid in at the death to deny Tom Nichols, who had the whites of Mark Howard's eyes in his sights.

Nichols was denied again moments later, with Wheater this time the defender putting his body on the line, while Madine was denied by McGee once again at the other end as the sides went in at the break with Wanderers leading 1-0.

There were no changes to either side as the players emerged for the start of the second period, which began with Bolton doubling their lead as Le Fondre's looping header from a Morais corner was nodded home by an unstoppable Wheater.

Beevers headed over as he got on the end of yet another corner from Morais on the hour, shortly before Karacan, scorer of the opening goal, was replaced to a standing ovation by Darren Pratley.

If Beevers came close before, he came even closer on 70 minutes as his stinging drive from the edge of the box was parried away by McGee.

Morais volleyed high and wide moments later, before some added gloss was put on the scoreline as Le Fondre raced on to a through ball from Vela to fire home a third and start the celebrations.

Supporters raced onto the pitch inside three added minutes for stoppages, causing play to be halted for several minutes. After returning to the stands, they were soon back on the turf as the final whistle prompted scenes of delight for the home supporters, who were able to celebrate as their side achieved something many thought was impossible at the start of the season.

Bolton finish the campaign in 2nd place and will join Sheffield United in the Championship next season, where they will hope to exorcise the ghosts of 12 months ago.

Bolton Wanderers: Howard, Beevers, Wheater, Dervite, A Taylor, Spearing, Karacan (Pratley 64), Vela, Morais, Le Fondre, Madine (Wilkinson 90)
Subs Not Used: Turner, Moxey, Long, Osede, Henry
Booked: Dervite
Goals: Karacan 22, Wheater 53, Le Fondre 75

Peterborough United: McGee, Bostwick, Baldwin, Hughes (Tafazolli 64), Da Silva Lopes (Borg 73), Forrester, Chettle, Freestone, Maddison, Nichols (Edwards 62), Mackail-Smith
Subs Not Used: Tyler, Smith, Inman, Morias
Booked: Hughes

Referee: Scott Duncan
Attendance: 22,590

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
1 Bolton Wanderers 18 39
2 Portsmouth 18 39
3 Oxford United 18 36
4 Stevenage 20 36
5 Peterborough United 19 35
View Full Standings >>


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