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Bolton Wanderers 2-1 Millwall: Pawel Olkowski & Gary O'Neil help Bolton to win

Pawel Olkowski
Bolton's Pawel Olkowski holds off Millwall's James Meredith to open the scoring

Bolton Wanderers put their off-field issues to one side to overcome Millwall and narrow the gap on their relegation rivals.

Pawel Olkowski opened the scoring for the Trotters after beating defender James Meredith and directing a shot into the bottom corner.

Bolton doubled their lead on the hour-mark following a counter-attack led by Gary O'Neil, which ended with the midfielder turning Mahlon Romeo and slotting past Jordan Archer.

Millwall ensured a nail-biting finale when Lee Gregory turned Jed Wallace's low cross home, but Bolton held on for a vital three points.

The result sees the Trotters remain second bottom of the Championship, but they are now just five points behind Millwall, who are just outside the relegation zone in 21st.

Suspended Wanderers boss Phil Parkinson watched a slow opening from the stands after his sending off against Leeds United last month.

The first opening fell to Millwall's Tom Elliott, who headed wide from a Shane Ferguson cross, before Ferguson then delivered a good ball to Gregory but his header was deflected over the bar.

Bolton responded well and, after Olkowski and Sammy Ameobi shot wide from distance, Callum Connelly missed a good chance from an O'Neil corner.

Olkowski produced the first moment of quality in the game when he collected a Connelly pass and finished confidently and the almost doubled their lead through Will Buckley, but he dragged his shot wide from 15 yards.

Bolton did not have to wait too long for the second as O'Neil carried the ball forward on the counter and beat Archer to put the Trotters in control.

Lions striker Gregory halved the deficit with just three minutes to go, with a good finish past keeper Remi Matthews.

Elliott headed a Ferguson cross onto the roof of the net as Millwall piled on late pressure but they were unable to find the equaliser to avoid a fourth consecutive league defeat.

Bolton manager Phil Parkinson told BBC Radio Manchester:

"Great win for us, Millwall are a difficult team to play against, we know what they're about. We raised our game 10% for each individual. We were great for those fifteen minutes after half-time.

"The dream is well and truly alive. We've got another home game on Tuesday but hopefully positive times are around the corner for the club, off the field as well.

"If there's potential new owners watching today, that's a great message for them that this club is alive and kicking and we're ready to fight for the next 10 games."

Millwall manager Neil Harris:

"It was one I didn't expect.

"The first half was scrappy but I spoke at half-time about still doing the nitty-gritty stuff while adding the quality. But the goals we gave away were poor.

"People had jobs to do and Gary O'Neil, who isn't a spring chicken anymore, ran virtually from his own box to the other end of the pitch and score. We had three players behind the ball before he gets his shot away.

"The cup game [against Brighton] at the Den will be a good occasion and exciting for the fans. Our priority though is the league and all I am focusing on is Birmingham away on Wednesday. It is a huge game after four defeats in a row."

Line-ups

Bolton

  • 20Matthews
  • 16Olkowski
  • 14Hobbs
  • 5Beevers
  • 3Taylor
  • 19O'Neil
  • 21WilliamsSubstituted forWilsonat 86'minutes
  • 17Connolly
  • 11BuckleySubstituted forDyerat 82'minutes
  • 10Ameobi
  • 28Magennis

Substitutes

  • 2Little
  • 7Oztumer
  • 8Donaldson
  • 18Wilson
  • 22Dyer
  • 27Williams
  • 48Connell

Millwall

  • 1Archer
  • 12Romeo
  • 15Pearce
  • 5Cooper
  • 3MeredithSubstituted forMarshallat 61'minutes
  • 11FergusonBooked at 90mins
  • 8Thompson
  • 6WilliamsBooked at 6minsSubstituted forMorisonat 69'minutes
  • 7Wallace
  • 9Gregory
  • 19ElliottBooked at 84mins

Substitutes

  • 4Hutchinson
  • 16Martin
  • 18Tunnicliffe
  • 20Morison
  • 22O'Brien
  • 28Leonard
  • 44Marshall
Referee:
Simon Hooper
Attendance:
13,035

Match Stats

Home TeamBoltonAway TeamMillwall
Possession
Home48%
Away52%
Shots
Home15
Away11
Shots on Target
Home4
Away4
Corners
Home5
Away8
Fouls
Home12
Away17

Live Text

Match ends, Bolton Wanderers 2, Millwall 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Bolton Wanderers 2, Millwall 1.

Attempt missed. Lee Gregory (Millwall) header from the centre of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Jed Wallace with a cross.

Attempt saved. Ben Thompson (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Tom Elliott.

Booking

Shane Ferguson (Millwall) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Shane Ferguson (Millwall).

Gary O'Neil (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Lee Gregory (Millwall) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box misses to the right. Assisted by Jed Wallace with a cross.

Foul by Mahlon Romeo (Millwall).

Josh Magennis (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Tom Elliott (Millwall) header from the right side of the six yard box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Shane Ferguson with a cross.

Goal!

Goal! Bolton Wanderers 2, Millwall 1. Lee Gregory (Millwall) right footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Jed Wallace.

Substitution

Substitution, Bolton Wanderers. Marc Wilson replaces Joe Williams.

Corner, Bolton Wanderers. Conceded by Mahlon Romeo.

Booking

Tom Elliott (Millwall) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Joe Williams (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Tom Elliott (Millwall).

Attempt missed. Ben Thompson (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Shane Ferguson.

Hand ball by Gary O'Neil (Bolton Wanderers).

Substitution

Substitution, Bolton Wanderers. Lloyd Dyer replaces William Buckley.

Pawel Olkowski (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Shane Ferguson (Millwall).

Attempt saved. Jed Wallace (Millwall) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Steve Morison.

Attempt missed. Ben Marshall (Millwall) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Shane Ferguson.

Offside, Bolton Wanderers. Joe Williams tries a through ball, but Gary O'Neil is caught offside.

Attempt blocked. Josh Magennis (Bolton Wanderers) right footed shot from long range on the left is blocked. Assisted by William Buckley.

Attempt missed. Tom Elliott (Millwall) header from the centre of the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Shane Ferguson with a cross.

Attempt missed. Josh Magennis (Bolton Wanderers) header from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Gary O'Neil with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Bolton Wanderers. Conceded by Jordan Archer.

Attempt saved. Pawel Olkowski (Bolton Wanderers) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Callum Connolly.

Attempt blocked. Callum Connolly (Bolton Wanderers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Sammy Ameobi.

Corner, Millwall. Conceded by Andrew Taylor.

Jack Hobbs (Bolton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Lee Gregory (Millwall).

Foul by Gary O'Neil (Bolton Wanderers).

Ben Thompson (Millwall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. William Buckley (Bolton Wanderers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Sammy Ameobi.

Substitution

Substitution, Millwall. Steve Morison replaces Shaun Williams.

Attempt saved. Ben Thompson (Millwall) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Tom Elliott with a headed pass.

Foul by Josh Magennis (Bolton Wanderers).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Norwich36219672452772
2Leeds36217860382270
3Sheff Utd36208861342768
4West Brom361710968482061
5Middlesbrough351513739261358
6Derby361510114644255
7Bristol City35159114437754
8Nottm Forest361314950401053
9Preston361312115549651
10Birmingham35121495345850
11Hull36148145051-150
12Brentford3513101260471349
13Sheff Wed361213114249-749
14Aston Villa35111596153848
15Swansea35138144543247
16Stoke361015113742-545
17Blackburn361111144756-944
18QPR36127174255-1343
19Reading36812164053-1336
20Wigan3699183652-1636
21Millwall36810183955-1634
22Rotherham36615153758-2133
23Bolton3678212456-3229
24Ipswich36313202860-3222
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