"The game doesn't have to be won inside the opening half. We stuck to our gameplan and as the match wore on we grew stronger," says Dougie FreedmanDougie Freedman believes patience was the key in securing Wanderers’ win over league-leaders Cardiff City in front of the Sky cameras at the Reebok Stadium.
Bolton hit back to flip the game on its head thanks to an inspired showing from sub David Ngog after Craig Noone had given the visitors the lead prior to half time.
The Frenchman first won a penalty for his side, which was coolly converted by Martin Petrov, before then diverting home Sam Ricketts’ drive in an improvised fashion.
Though Ngog’s match-winning contribution was to come to a premature end, after he was shown a second yellow card followed by a subsequent red in stoppage time.
Speaking in his post-match press conference Freedman said: “We’ve got a great bunch of lads here and they’ve taken on board what we’ve asked of them.
“I didn’t think we deserved to be a goal down at half time, but we responded in the right manner and asked a lot of questions of Cardiff as soon as the second half started.
“Overall I thought we deserved to win that match of football.
“Our players have got to get to know that because of the demands of this league we will be making use of the whole squad. It was certainly the squad that won us this game tonight.
“Cardiff are a top team. They’ve spent a substantial amount of money and added some quality players.
“We passed the ball quite well in the first half without ever really hurting them. The game doesn’t have to be won inside the opening half. We stuck to our game-plan and as the match wore on we grew stronger.
“I knew having played against Cardiff a lot, that if we could keep the tempo up in the second half we’d get chances.
“Now there’s no use in us opening the champagne and celebrating thinking we’re going to be okay. We’ve now got to respond on Monday morning in training.
“Hopefully the players will come in with a smile on their faces ready to go again.
“Overall, I think it was a good performance from the whole squad and coaching staff.
“The fans played their part, particularly in the second half, in getting behind the side. It’s all about momentum both on and off the pitch and today the supporters gave us a real boost. They were vocal and it’s good to send them home happy.”