Report: Bolton 3-0 Peterborough United
Bolton Wanderers will play Sky Bet Championship football next season after easing to a convincing 3-0 victory over Peterborough United on Sunday lunchtime and securing second place in the process.
The deadlock was broken halfway through the first period, with Jem Karacan coolly guiding the ball home from close range and it was two soon after the restart as David Wheater headed the ball past Luke McGee.
It was three with 14 minutes remaining too, with Adam Le Fondre getting in on the action with a drilled effort - the icing on the cake of what was an afternoon to remember for all associated with Bolton Wanderers Football Club
Wanderers were unchanged from the side who started against Port Vale eight days ago, with Jay Spearing retaining the captaincy as Darren Pratley returned to the matchday 18.
The game got underway at a sun-soaked Macron Stadium and it was clear to see from the outset that Wanderers were up for the fight.
The visitors were under pressure from the outset, with Bolton looking to get an early foothold in the clash and Gary Madine causing problems for the Posh.
Jem Karacan meanwhile saw a 20-yard half-volley fly narrowly wide of the upright with 11 minutes on the clock.
It was very much one-way traffic in the clash, with Mark Howard virtually a spectator for the opening quarter-hour.
On the 17th minute of the game however, a round of applause went up around Macron Stadium in honour of Ivan Klasnic who was present.
During that minute meanwhile, Madine saw his drive from a corner smothered by Luke McGee.
With the first period halfway through however, the deadlock was broken and it was Karacan who steered his volley home from five yards out following a beautiful cross into the area from Dorian Dervite.
No more than Bolton deserved given their dominance, it was one greeted with the loudest of roars from the Macron faithful.
Wanderers continued their pressure, with Dervite even coming close himself after finding himself in unfamiliar territory in Peterborough’s 18-yard box, only to be dispossessed at the crucial moment.
On a rare foray into Bolton territory however, Tom Nichols looked set to pull Boro level after finding the ball at his feet with just Howard to beat, but a superb sliding tackle from Mark Beevers at the death ensured that the Whites’ lead was preserved.
Another last ditch block meanwhile saw the scoreline remain in Bolton’s favour, with Wheater a rock at the back to keep another Nichols effort out.
Up the other end, Madine was denied only by the legs of McGee while Le Fondre spurned a glorious opportunity when failing to connect with the ball just a matter of yards out.
Come the half time whistle however, Bolton’s lead was just the one goal.
With no changes for either side at the break, proceedings got back underway at Macron Stadium.
And it was the visitors were looked lively early on, with Chris Forrester’s long range drive straight down the throat of Howard.
The tempo of the game was fairly relaxed, with Bolton easily dealing with anything coming their way from the visitors.
And with the second half seven minutes old, their lead was doubled as Wheater forced a header home from close range after the ball had been bouncing around in the penalty area.
A sucker punch for the visitors, it was just the tonic needed for Wanderers with Macron Stadium and had the Whites oozing with confidence on the ball thereafter.
Not content with just the two however, Bolton continued to pen Peterborough into their own area as the clock ran down.
Beevers almost had a goal too, with McGee somehow keeping his thunderous strike out of the net.
Wanderers just kept on going though and were eventually rewarded with a third as following some superb build-up play by Vela, Le Fondre drilled home past a helpless McGee.
It was party time at Macron Stadium as the game entered its final ten minutes, with the Bolton faithful in superb voice while the remainder of the game passed without much action of note.
Come the final whistle however, it mattered not with Wanderers officially a Sky Bet Championship outfit once again!