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Report: Falkirk 1 Wanderers 1

Posted: Wed 25 Jul 2012
Author: BWFC Staff

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Chris Eagles on the scoresheet, as Bolton conclude their three-game tour of Scotland with a draw at Falkirk

Wanderers concluded their three-game tour of Scotland with a 1-1 draw against Falkirk.

On a summery evening at The Falkirk Stadium, Chris Eagles' stunning volley midway through the first half equalised an extremely early Lyle Taylor opener.

Sam Ricketts, who wore the captain's armband for the majority of the second period, Martin Petrov and Tim Ream all completed 90 minutes, whilst there were also mature performances from youngsters Mark Davies, Chung-Yong Lee, Josh Vela, Joe Riley, Michael O'Halloran.


The game began in the most bizarre manner. With approximately 15 or so seconds on the clock, Adam Bogdan registered Wanderers' first touch - picking the ball out of his own net.

A long punt forward from the Falkirk rearguard found Taylor in space. From 25 yards out, the Bairns striker remained composed enough to loft the ball over Bogdan and into the net.

The early opener had seemingly caught everyone in the stadium off-guard, and the hosts were able to build on their positive start.

The lively Taylor continued to be the focal point of the early Falkirk attacks. He saw a headed goal ruled out for offside on four minutes before seconds later scuffing an effort narrowly wide of the far post from the right channel.

Though after weathering the early storm, Coyle's charges sprang into life on 14 minutes, levelling the scores in spectacular fashion.

With few options open to him, Eagles assumed possession 30 yards from goal and arrowed a low half-volley into Michael McGovern's bottom corner. It was a superb hit from the former Burnley man.

Bolton were now in full control of the game, dictating possession and carving out numerous openings.

Petrov drilled an effort wide after clever link-up play from Chung-Yong and Kevin Davies, before the Bulgarian came even closer from a set piece that was well saved.

As the interval approached chances continued to flow. After showcasing his usual fleet of feet, Mark Davies forced McGovern into a smart low save and Keith Andrews came close with a powerful header from a corner.

Coyle shuffled his pack for the start of the second period, introducing Andy Lonergan and Darren Pratley.

And the latter almost had an immediate impact, stroking a right-foot effort wide of the target following more good work from Mark Davies.

The Falkirk goalkeeper was then called into action when Mark Davies found space in the right channel, repelling the midfielder's low effort from ten yards out.

Further substitutions for both sides followed, which seemed to somewhat hamper the flow of the game.

Academy graduates Riley, Vela and O'Halloran were all thrown on, whilst trialist Kalifa Cisse, Gregg Wylde and Marcos Alonso also entered the action at around the hour mark. Falkirk meanwhile had completely changed their entire line-up.

The remaining minutes petered out, with O'Halloran almost on hand to turn home Wylde's low cross late on.

As it was, the game ended level, with attentions now turning to Saturday's trip to Crewe.

Falkirk: McGovern (Bowman 46), Duffie (Rowan 62), Kingsley (Dick 46), Dods (Smith 62), Flynn (T Fulton 62), J Fulton (Turnbull 62), Sibbald (D Fulton 62), Murdoch (Faulds 62), Taylor (White 46), Haworth (McGrandles 62), Leahy (Small 62)

Wanderers: Bogdan (Lonergan 46), Mears (Riley 61), Ream, Knight (Alonso 61), Ricketts, Chung-Yong (Wylde 61), Andrews (Vela 61), M Davies (Cisse 69), Petrov, Eagles (Pratley 46), K Davies (O'Halloran 69) (Unused subs: Eaves, Blakeman)