Fulham 1-1 Bolton Wanderers

  • October 28, 2017 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/5bebe

Tom Cairney scored in the fourth minute of stoppage time, as Bolton were denied a first Championship away win since April 2015 by drawing 1-1 at Fulham.

Having gone 31 away games without a win at this level, as well as 25 years without picking up all three points at Fulham, the odds were seemingly stacked against Wanderers, who took a 28th-minute lead against the run of play.

After latching on to a long clearance from Ben Alnwick, Sammy Ameobi beat the offside trap before drilling low into the bottom corner and put the visitors on course for victory.

Fulham dominated possession and were a constant threat as the game progressed, and it came as no surprise when they equalised in the fourth of six added minutes for stoppages, as Tom Cairney was found unmarked at the far post to beat Alnwick and ensure the game ended all-square.

After picking up four points from the previous two outings - against Sheffield Wednesday and Queens Park Rangers, respectively - Phil Parkinson named the same side for a third straight game, keeping faith with those who have helped to steady the ship in recent weeks.

The first chance of the afternoon fell the way of the visitors, as a deflected cross from Josh Vela brought a save out of David Button in the Fulham goal.

Vela was involved again moments later, winning a corner off the legs of Ryan Sessegnon, from which David Wheater blasted a strike narrowly over the crossbar.

Ameobi's first attempt of the game arrived with nine minutes on the clock, as he cut inside from the right before shooting wide with his left foot, shortly before Karl Henry became the first player to enter the referee's notebook for a late challenge on Cairney.

Fulham had the ball in the net on the quarter-hour, as Cairney put Floyd Ayite through on goal. His strike got the better of Alnwick and brought the home crowd to their feet, only for the celebrations to be cut short by the assistant referee's offside flag.

Cairney shot straight at Alnwick from the next attack, as he pounced on a breakdown in communication between Wheater and Andrew Taylor, shortly before Aboubakar Kamara volleyed over from an Aiyte cross.

An ambitious 25-yard effort from Adam Armstrong flashed narrowly wide midway through the half, moments before Oliver Norwood brought a comfortable stop out of Alnwick at the other end, but the deadlock was broken on 28 minutes with the goal going in favour of Wanderers.

A long clearance from Alnwick caught out the Fulham defence, who appealed for an offside flag to be raised against Ameobi. The referee's assistant ruled the Bolton winger to have been played onside, however, and after strolling his way through the challenge of Tim Ream, Ameobi picked out the bottom corner to give the visitors the lead.

Both sides had chances to alter the scoreline as the half moved on - with Armstrong shooting wide for Bolton, while Kamara clipped the top of the crossbar at the other end.

Kamara was by far Fulham's most threatening player at this stage, bringing another save out of Alnwick before the break, whilst also shooting inches wide of the far post, but it was Bolton who were all-smiles at the interval as they left the field with a 1-0 lead to their name.

There were no substitutions to either side as the players came out for the start of the second-half, although Wanderers were forced into an early change following the restart as Antonee Robinson came on in place of the injured Taylor.

After a stop-start period of play at the start of the half, the first chance fell the way of the hosts although Sessegnon's shot following a short corner was straight into the arms of Alnwick.

Bolton responded well and almost doubled their lead at the other end, with Armstrong once again dancing his way beyond multiple defenders before forcing a stop out of Button.

Wanderers survived a goalmouth scramble on the hour, with Wheater thumping the ball to safety, shortly before Neeskens Kabano fired over the crossbar as Fulham increased the pressure.

Darren Pratley sliced a shot wide against his former club as the clock reached the midway point of the half, moments before a poor clearance from Button fell kindly at the feet of Armstrong. The on-loan Newcastle United forward sent the ball back in the direction of the empty goal, only to see his shot bounce agonisingly wide of the target.

From that point on, it was pretty much all Fulham as they desperately pushed forward in search of an equalising goal.

Excellent goalkeeping from Alnwick, combined with outstanding defending from Wheater and Mark Beevers, ensured the hosts were kept at bay, although the breakthrough was finally made in the fourth minute of stoppage time as Cairney broke Bolton's resolve.

Unmarked at the far post, McDonald's cross picked out the former Blackburn Rovers midfielder, who made no mistake in finding the net from close range and ensure the game ended at 1-1.

Bolton's failure to end their miserable away run means they are still four points from safety at the foot of the Championship table. They lie two points below Sunderland on seven points, ahead of a meeting between the two sides at the Stadium of Light on Tuesday.

Fulham: Button, Fredericks, Kalas (de la Torre 89), Ream, Sessegnon, Norwood (Johansen 70), McDonald, Fonte (Kebano 57), Cairney, Ayite, Kamara
Subs Not Used: Bettinelli, Odoi, Edun, Cisse
Booked: McDonald
Goals: Cairney 90+4

Bolton Wanderers: Alnwick, A Taylor (Robinson 49), Beevers, Wheater, Little, Pratley, Henry, Vela (Le Fondre 82), Ameobi (Morais 68), Armstrong, Madine
Subs Not Used: Howard, Noone, Osede, Darby
Booked: Henry, Wheater, Alnwick, Little
Goals: Ameobi 28

Referee: Geoff Eltringham
Attendance: 18,792

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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