Bolton Wanderers Under-18s lost 2-0 away at Chester last Wednesday night as they suffered an FA Youth Cup second round exit.
With just three minutes on the clock, it looked as if young Whites had taken an early lead. Tom Grivosti’s header fell to the feet of Cameron Moore, who calmly slotted into the back of the net. However, the linesman’s flag was up, denying Wanderers the lead.
The Trotters continued their early pressure, this time through Alex Samizadeh. With the striker through on goal, Chester’s James Jones recovered well to put the forward under pressure, forcing his effort into the arms of the host's goalkeeper James Hodges.
To their credit, Chester worked their way back into the game and could have taken the lead when Ilan Ap-Gareth headed down to an unmarked Conor Rowbottom, only for him to fire over from six yards.
Hodges was once again tested soon after when Ryan White’s cross found Samizadeh free in the box. The forward's effort was deflected into the path of Moore, but he was denied from close range by the shot-stopper.
With chances proving harder to carve out, Jordan Grant tried his luck from 30 yards out as he beat Hodges with a dipping volley, only to see the ball fly narrowly over the crossbar.
The Trotters were made to rue their missed opportunities though as the hosts took the lead shortly before the interval.
With Nathan Brown racing clean-through on goal, James Aspinall denied the Chester man with a stunning reaction save but could do to prevent the rebound falling to the feet of the forward who tapped into an empty net to fire his side ahead going in at the break.
It didn’t take long for Wanderers to test Hodges once more following the restart as Earing went within millimetres of connecting with Grant’s cross before Samizadeh tested the Chester keeper again from close range.
White then tried his luck from 20 yards, only to see his shot deflected behind. From the following corner, Hodges produced yet another save, this time keeping out Moore’s header from close range.
With 20 minutes to go though, Luca Navarro saw red. Having come on eight minutes earlier, the midfielder reacted negatively following Crawford’s tackle and was removed from the field of play.
The battle between Samizadeh and Hodges continued throughout the half as ten-man Bolton pressed for an equaliser.
However, it was once again the Chester keeper who came out on top, this time saving at his near post when the Iranian was through on goal.
With just minutes left of the game and as Wanderers continued to attack, Chester caught them on the counter and put the game to bed.
Rowbottom ran the length of the field following a Bolton free kick and calmly slotted past Aspinall, securing Chester’s place in the second round.
Bolton: Aspinall, Grant, Lonsdale, Marsh (Navarro 62), Brockbank, Grivosti, Politic, Earing, Samizadeh, Moore (Everest 78), White.
Subs not used: Turner, Adbo, Jones-Griffiths.
Chester: Hodges, Thomson, Downes, Crayston, E. Jones, J. Jones, Edwards, Crawford, Rowbottom, Brown, Ap-Gareth.
Subs not used: Cottrell, Carr, Hardman, Dobson, Hewitt.