If in the last few weeks we had taken massive steps forward, yesterday felt like we’d taken a couple back.
Bolton bowed out of the FA Cup at the first round stage for the first time since 1989, and lost to lower division opposition in the competition for the first time since Sheffield United won at the Reebok in 2008. Plymouth Argyle were the team that beat us this time, scoring early via a Callum McFadzean effort.
It’s not necessarily the result (there’s no long term damage from being knocked out of the FA Cup) but the performance. Only one change was made from last weekend’s team that beat Fleetwood, while Ryan Lowe changed half the Plymouth side. But you wouldn’t have been able to work out who was the League One side, maybe bar the opening few minutes, once Argyle weathered the storm, they were simply better than us. Remi Matthews had to make a stop at his near post to deny them a second goal, while the only real chance I can remember after we went behind was Joe Dodoo’s second half effort, into the ground, back up and forcing a save out of Alex Palmer, and a braindead shot from range from Jason Lowe when other options seemed more sensible.
Wanderers just never got going again, simple five yard passes not reaching their target. Come the end of the game, a situation where you’d think and hope we were massively pressing for a leveller, it was the men in green who were more likely to score again.
Hopefully, it’s one defeat that we had to get out of our system. If that’s the case, then we’ll at least soon forget about yesterday.