Birmingham City 0-0 Bolton Wanderers

  • August 15, 2017 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton picked up a point on the road for the second time in four days, after holding Birmingham City to a goalless draw at St Andrew's.

After coming from behind to salvage a 1-1 draw at Millwall on Saturday, Wanderers doubled their points tally for the campaign with a resolute performance that denied Harry Redknapp's side even a solitary shot on target all evening.

In truth, Bolton didn't threaten much at the other end, although Adam Armstrong and Gary Madine came close on several occasions, as the game finished as it had started.

Phil Parkinson made two changes to the Bolton side that started at Millwall on Saturday, with Filipe Morais and Armstrong coming into the side at the expense of Mark Little and Adam Le Fondre, both of whom dropped to the substitutes' bench.

After a quiet opening in the Midlands, the first chance fell the way of the visitors. Madine, involved in a battle with Emilio Nsue, managed to shrug off the attention of the Blues defender to get his head to a cross from Morais, only to see his effort bounce narrowly wide of David Stockdale's far post.

Wanderers came close again moments later, as Armstrong's low cross was poorly dealt with by Marc Roberts but Cheikh Ndoye was in the right place at the right time to get a block on a rebound from Darren Pratley.

It was then Birmingham's opportunity to register their first strike on goal, but David Cotterill's powerful drive was charged down by Andrew Taylor following a neat lay-off from Jacques Maghoma.

Their first clear sight of goal arrived shortly before the 20-minute mark. The bounce of a long clearance from Stockdale caught Mark Beevers out, allowing Clayton Donaldson in on Mark Howard. After deciding to take his chance early, Donaldson's volley flashed just over the crossbar and the game remained goalless.

The hosts were then denied the opening goal by an outstanding save from Howard, who, after committing to a dive, produced remarkable reactions to keep out a goalbound strike from Cotterill after it had taken a wicked deflection on it's way through.

Madine headed wide once more as the clock passed the midway point of the half, moments before Armstrong drilled an attempt narrowly wide of the target from 25 yards with Stockdale seemingly beaten.

An injury to Michael Morrison, as well as multiple stoppages that allowed Ndoye to receive treatment, denied both sides regular spells in possession as the half drew to a close without incident - with the sides level at 0-0.

Having failed to recover from an injury suffered prior to the break, Birmingham emerged for the start of the second period without Ndoye - with former Bolton loanee Lukas Jutkiewicz introduced as a half-time substitute in his place.

With the action back underway, it was the visitors who created the first chance and they came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock as Armstrong headed just wide after connecting with a cross from Morais.

Birmingham had appeals for a penalty turned down just a minute later, with referee Darren England showing a yellow card to Maghoma, who he had adjudged to have taken a dive inside the Bolton box.

Beevers headed over from a Morais corner on 53 minutes, shortly before Roberts put his body on the line to keep out a goalbound shot from Armstrong, who had got himself on the end of a cutback from Pratley.

Birmingham came close with little over 20 minutes remaining, with Maghoma getting on the end of a ball from Craig Gardner before bending an effort wide of Howard's far post.

Bolton made their first change in the immediate aftermath of that chance, with Le Fondre coming on for Armstrong, but it was a Blues substitution that sparked a reaction from the crowd - with debutant Isaac Vassell replacing Donaldson.

The visitors continued to look for a breakthrough and were thwarted by Stockdale with 15 minutes to play, as he tipped behind a header from Madine, shortly before the Birmingham goalkeeper made another smart stop to keep out a powerful drive from Reece Burke.

Madine's evening was over in the 83rd minute, with Parkinson opting to introduce Aaron Wilbraham for the latter stages, but it added no further attacking intent to Wanderers, who comfortably saw out the clock to claim a goalless draw and a point on their travels.

After three games away from home, including the Carabao Cup victory at Crewe Alexandra last Wednesday, Bolton return to Macron Stadium on Saturday when they play host to Derby County.

Birmingham City: Stockdale, Nsue, Morrison (Shotton 26), Roberts, Grounds, Cotterill, Ndoye (Jutkiewicz 46), Gardner, Kieftenbeld, Maghoma, Donaldson (Vassell 73)
Subs Not Used: Kuszczak, Tesche, Robinson, Gleeson
Booked: Maghoma

Bolton Wanderers: Howard, A Taylor, Beevers, Burke, Dervite, Morais, Karacan, Pratley, Cullen, Armstrong (Le Fondre 70), Madine (Wilbraham 83)
Subs Not Used: Alnwick, Little, Buckley, Robinson, Osede
Booked: Morais

Referee: Darren England
Attendance: 20,215

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
11 Ipswich Town 20 27
12 Cheltenham Town 19 27
13 Bolton Wanderers 20 26
14 Accrington Stanley 19 24
15 Charlton Athletic 20 23
View Full Standings >>


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