Bolton Wanderers 2-2 Blackburn Rovers

  • July 31, 2021 | By Chris Mann
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Bolton will enter the 2021/22 campaign on the back of an unbeaten pre-season, after they played out an entertaining 2-2 draw with Blackburn Rovers.

With supporters back at the University of Bolton Stadium to witness a game of football for the first time since February 2020, Ian Evatt's side put on a dominant display for the opening hour - with a 2-0 lead to boot - before a number of substitutions and Rovers' Championship superiority eventually saw them claw back to level terms.

The deadlock was broken shortly before the half-hour as the Trotters, whose lack of success from set-pieces has been highlighted of late, took the lead from a corner routine.

Josh Sheehan's outswinging cross from the right picked out his fellow summer arrival George Johnston, who stooped to glance a header beyond Thomas Kaminshi and into the far corner.

The hosts took their advantage into the break and soon added to it after the restart, with Oladapo Afolayan causing mayhem in the Blackburn penalty area before seeing his low cross turned in by Rovers defender Hayden Carter.

Bolton were good value for their lead but were pegged back midway through the second period as Ben Brereton tapped in following a goalmouth scramble, and he equalised seven minutes later after being afforded too much time on the edge of the box to fire across Joel Dixon and into the corner for 2-2.

Both sides had chances to win the game in the latter stages, with Ali Crawford wasting Wanderers' best chance with a 30-yard drive having spotted Kaminshi off his line, but the two Lancashire rivals were made to settle for a draw ahead of next weekend's season openers.

Bolton Wanderers: Dixon, John (Gordon 81), Johnston (Brockbank 60), Baptiste (Senior 90), Jones, Williams (Tutte 85), Sheehan (Crawford 85), Sarcevic (Thomason 77), Afolayan (Darcy 82), Isgrove (Doyle 67), Bakayoko (Politic 85)
Subs Not Used: Hutchinson
Goals: Johnston 29, Carter 50(og)

Blackburn Rovers: Kaminski, Nyambe, Magloire (Buckley 60), Lenihan, Carter, Pickering, Davenport (Garrett 60), Travis (Rothwell 60), Dolan (Gallagher 60), Brereton, Armstrong
Subs Not Used: Eastham, Stergiakis, Vale, Butterworth, Cirino, McBride, Pike
Goals: Brereton 66,73

Referee: Darren Handley
Attendance: 6,907

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
7 Plymouth Argyle 46 80
8 Oxford United 46 76
9 Bolton Wanderers 46 73
10 Portsmouth 46 73
11 Ipswich Town 46 70
View Full Standings >>


Who is Bolton's 2021/22 Player of the Year?
32.58% Oladapo Afolayan
30.96% Gethin Jones
21.72% Ricardo Almeida Santos
5.51% Declan John
4.05% Kieran Lee
3.08% MJ Williams
1.78% Joel Dixon
0.32% George Johnston