Bolton pulled off what was something of a shock result last night as they managed to pick up a win at playoff-chasing Birmingham City, and with Rotherham not picking up maximum points at Hull, cutting the gap to safety to two points.
It was a very attritional game at St Andrews, without loads of clear cut chances – there were five shots on target all night. Phil Parkinson appeased a lot of fans who were demanding two up top with Josh Magennis and Clayton Donaldson both starting. Marc Wilson, David Wheater and Mark Beevers started in a three-man central defensive set-up, something that may have been tried on Saturday but didn’t look quite right.
It did work last night though, with our big defenders largely dealing with Birmingham’s big forward players, including our former man Lukas Jutkiewicz. We probably had the first real chance through Craig Noone in the first half. Not that we always in control or anything like that – Jota rattled the woodwork at 0-0, then when we did go 1-0 up, via a Callum Connolly header from a well delivered Luke Murphy free-kick, we largely played the last 20 minutes in our own half.
But we managed to see it out, and while there was nothing there to suggest the rest of the season was suddenly going to become a comfortable watch, it is a morale-boosting away win, and suddenly, there might be some belief that we can actually stay up.