Bolton Wanderers won their first game of 2020 yesterday as they beat Tranmere 2-0 to at least cut the gap to safety to 17 points, and also overtake Tranmere in points accrued since the start of the season.
Keith Hill made a slight rejig from Tuesday’s game, Kean Bryan, signed on loan a few days ago from Sheffield United, replaced Liam Edwards at the back, while Chris O’Grady replaced Ronan Darcy further forward. Both of those changes worked, Bryan was very impressive, strong at the back, comfortable on the ball, and on one occasion was able to drive forward with it. O’Grady meanwhile would score the second goal nearly midway through the second half, scoring from 10 yards. His celebration, or initial lack of one, seemed to show that he thought he might have been offside, but he wasn’t, and that came just moments after we should have gone two up.
It was as comfortable day supporting Bolton has it has been for a while. We were much the better side, helped by Tranmere having several players who just didn’t play very well. We wasted no time in getting ahead too, when Daryl Murphy nodded down in the second minute for Dennis Politic to fire in a volley from outside the area, one of the best goals you’ll surely see in English football yesterday afternoon.
Long term, it probably doesn’t help us too much. 17 points is still a massive gap, and there are two tough away trips to Doncaster and Coventry before we host a high flying team in Wycombe. But we’ve dealt Tranmere a big blow and hopefully we can have a few more decent results between now and the end of the season.