Bolton Wanderers 3-0 Portsmouth

  • January 14, 2023 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL:

Dion Charles, Kieran Lee and Eoin Toal were all on target as Bolton brushed Portsmouth aside with a 3-0 victory at the University of Bolton Stadium.

Wanderers went ahead with 15 minutes played as Charles, who had been denied superbly by Josh Oluwayemi moments earlier, latched on to a pass from Randell Williams to stroke home the opener.

Lee added a second three minutes into the second-half, firing home from close range after a loose ball had ricocheted into his path, while Toal completed the scoring 19 minutes from time with a superb side-footed curling effort from just outside the box.

Ian Evatt made six changes from last Saturday's goalless draw against Plymouth Argyle when the Trotters hosted Pompey in the Papa Johns Trophy this past Tuesday, but he reverted back to the side that faced the Pilgrims for this latest meeting in league competition.

So sure of his starting line-up, it came as no surprise to see them dominate from the off, with Conor Bradley first to call Oluwayemi into action inside eight minutes as he connected with a cross from Toal.

Bradley tried his luck again on 13 minutes, this time pouncing after a Kyle Dempsey effort had been charged down, with Oluwayemi once again making a routine save.

The deadlock was broken two minutes later, however, with Charles grabbing his 12th of the season.

After his initial strike was saved superbly by Oluwayemi, Randell Williams retrieved the ball and delivered a cross to the far post where Charles took a touch before finishing at the near post to make it 1-0.

Sean Raggett couldn't quite sort out his feet to turn in Connor Ogilvie's cross on 25 minutes as Portsmouth looked for an equaliser, shortly before Michael Jacobs' corner picked out an unmarked Michael Morrison, who could only head over from inside the six-yard box.

Ogilvie headed over from another Jacobs set-piece soon after the half-hour, before Bolton were forced into a change as Jon Dadi Bodvarsson failed to respond to treatment and was replaced by debutant Dan Nlundulu.

Wanderers had taken their advantage into the break and doubled it within three minutes of the restart, as Oluwayemi fumbled a cross from Dempsey and Lee reacted quickest to smash home the rebound for 2-0.

Charles came close to making it 3-0 on 51 minutes as his sliced volley from a George Johnston cross was well gathered by the Portsmouth goalkeeper, shortly before Owen Dale dragged a shot wide at the other end.

James Trafford made his first serious save of the afternoon on 62 minutes, throwing out a hand to prevent Colby Bishop from volleying in a ball from Denver Hume, while Nlundulu headed just past the post for the hosts shortly thereafter after Lee had provided the pass.

Pompey made a triple substitution midway through the half but the game was over as a contest with just under 20 minutes to play as Bradley found Toal on the edge of the area, whose side-footed effort found the corner to make it 3-0.

Trafford saved from Reeco Hackett-Fairchild in another rare venture forward for the visitors, with what proved to be the final piece of goalmouth action.

Victory for Bolton opens up a six-point gap above 7th-placed Wycombe Wanderers in the battle for the League One play-offs. They remain 5th, level on points with Derby County, who they face at Pride Park next Saturday.

Bolton Wanderers: Trafford, Johnston (Santos 83), Aimson, Toal, R Williams, Morley, Dempsey (Sheehan 83), Bradley, Lee (M Williams 85), Bodvarsson (Nlundulu 37), Charles (Kachunga 75)
Subs Not Used: Sadlier, Beck
Goals: Charles 15, Lee 48, Toal 71

Portsmouth: Oluwayemi, Morrison (Towler 67), Raggett, Ogilvie, Swanson, Tunnicliffe (Thompson 83), Morrell, Hume (Hackett-Fairchild 67), Dale, Jacobs (Curtis 66), Bishop (Scarlett 83)
Subs Not Used: Steward, Pigott
Booked: Morrell

Referee: Geoff Eltringham
Attendance: 17,877

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
1 Portsmouth 19 42
2 Bolton Wanderers 18 39
3 Oxford United 18 36
4 Stevenage 20 36
5 Peterborough United 19 35
View Full Standings >>


Who is Bolton's 2022/23 Player of the Year?
25.9% Conor Bradley
22.3% James Trafford
20.09% Dion Charles
10.05% Kyle Dempsey
6.82% Aaron Morley
6.45% Ricardo Almeida Santos
3.5% George Johnston
3.32% Eoin Toal
1.01% Kieran Lee
0.55% Gethin Jones