Bolton Match Zone

Bolton Beat Villa – That’s Snow Joke


Bolton secured another three points in their quest for survival as they upset the odds to beat Aston Villa in snowy conditions.

Birmingham had put the pressure on us with a 3-0 thrashing at home, but in the end Adam Le Fondre came up with the decisive finish after a corner flashed across the goalmouth.

Wanderers started off strongly, a run of corners from the off, setting a positive tempo against a side who had demolished league leaders Wolves just seven days previously. In the 19th minute, one got through, Darren Pratley taking a touch in the area before being turned in by Le Fondre from a matter of yards out, being able to find the space.

Pratley had been an injury doubt before the game, and while he had impressed in the early stages, he had to come off before half-time, with Josh Vela getting a chance after being relegated to the bench in recent games.

From here, you would have expected Bolton to sit back, but to their credit, they carried on.  I would argue that we were more under the cosh the last time we won a home game, that being against Sunderland. There were moments, Andy Taylor was lucky to stay on the pitch after a challenge on Birkir Bjarnason, the Icelander otherwise a bit of a whinger for most of the night, while Ben Alnwick had to tip over a wicked Jack Grealish effort and made another stop in the dying stages from James Bree.
We also had chances – Jon Flanagan was denied by a goalline clearance from all-round nice guy John Terry, while Le Fondre`s first-time finish in the second half flashed past Sam Johnstone`s left-hand post.

In the end, it was a Wanderers win, and there was also some decent chemistry between all of the front four. Whether the snowy pitch slowing down the ball helped us and hindered Villa could be debated, but from where we were in September, to now being in a position where we not as less could stay up, but should stay up, is a massive turnaround.

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