Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Club News

#FixtureReleaseDay: Famous festive outings

21 June 2018

Football and the festive period go hand in hand - once the presents have been opened and the Christmas dinners consumed, the thoughts of fans around the country turn to their team's fixtures between the big day itself and the New Year.

And in the latest of bwfc.co.uk's special features leading up to Fixture Release Day, we take a look at some of Bolton Wanderers' most notable clashes during the festive period over the course of the past three decades.

1990/91: BOLTON WANDERERS 4-1 BOURNEMOUTH

The first day of 1991 saw Wanderers run out 4-1 winners over Bournemouth at Burnden Park, although it is a match that is remembered for Paul Comstive’s efforts for the Whites.

The late midfielder scored twice against the Cherries, both directly from corner kicks, while Tony Philliskirk and Julian Darby put the shine on the result with strikes of their own as Phil Neal’s side made it 13 games unbeaten in the league.

1993/94: BOLTON WANDERERS 4-2 NOTTS COUNTY

This New Year’s Day clash at Burnden Park was certainly one to remember for the Bolton faithful as their side ran out winners over their Notts County counterparts.

Efforts from Robert Fleck, Scott Green and Alan Thompson alongside an own goal by Mark Draper in front of 11,041 spectators ensured that the Whites extended their unbeaten run in Division One to eleven games.

2001/02: BOLTON WANDERERS 2-2 LEICESTER CITY

Perhaps one of the most memorable games ever at our current home, albeit for the wrong reasons, Wanderers overcame numerous obstacles to take a share of the spoils versus Leicester City on December 29, 2001.

Paul Warhurst and Dean Holdsworth were dismissed inside 23 minutes for the home side, with a Michael Ricketts own goal and a Brian Deane strike putting the visitors in control inside half an hour.

Kevin Nolan pulled one back for the nine-men of Bolton with eleven minutes of the first half remaining though and, following Muzzy Izzet’s dismissal in the 69th minute, the stage was set for Ricketts to nod home a leveller at the death for the Trotters.

2002/03: BOLTON WANDERERS 4-3 NEWCASTLE UNITED

It was certainly a Boxing Day to remember for the Whites back in 2002 as they emerged victorious in a seven-goal thriller with Newcastle United at BL6.

Jay-Jay Okocha opened the scoring inside five minutes for Wanderers, and although Alan Shearer levelled three minutes later, Ricardo Gardner’s immediate response saw Bolton back in front.

A Michael Ricketts goal either side of half time then saw the home side in a commanding position, and despite late goals from Shearer and future Bolton striker Shola Ameobi setting up a grandstand finish, Sam Allardyce’s men held out for the three points.

2006/07: BOLTON WANDERERS 2-1 NEWCASTLE UNITED

Once again, Newcastle United visited the Reebok Stadium the day after Christmas and as they had done four years previous, they were sent packing back to the North East with their tails between their legs.

It had started brightly for the visitors though as Kieran Dyer put them ahead inside eight minutes, but a Peter Ramage own goal in the 32nd minute ensured that the scores were level before half time with Nicolas Anelka’s effort with 57 minutes on the clock seeing the points remain at BL6.

2014/15: BOLTON WANDERERS 2-1 BLACKBURN ROVERS

When the signing of veteran striker Emile Heskey was announced on Christmas Eve, more than a few eyebrows were raised around the football world.

Just two days later though, the experienced frontman showed that he was still a force to be reckoned with as he scored just 13 minutes into his Bolton debut in a local derby clash with Blackburn Rovers, tucking home Eidur Gudjohnsen’s cross to pull his new side level after Josh King had put the visitors ahead.

And the turnaround was complete two minutes after the hour mark as Darren Pratley notched to send the home faithful into raptures and provide them with a late Christmas present.

2015/16: BOLTON WANDERERS 1-0 BLACKBURN ROVERS

Although it was a season where the Trotters did not have much to cheer about as they suffered relegation to Sky Bet League One come its conclusion, the festive period of 2015/16 offered something in the way of celebration as the Whites defeated their local rivals from Ewood Park.

The only goal of the game was scored with 13 minutes of the clash remaining as Gary Madine turned on his heel to fire the ball past a stranded Jason Steele and earn Bolton their first win in 17 outings.

2016/17: BOLTON WANDERERS 2-1 SCUNTHORPE UNITED

A clash of the Championship’s first and third placed sides, this New Year’s Eve encounter at Macron Stadium in 2016 certainly wasn’t for the faint hearted.

With Neal Bishop having cancelled out Josh Vela’s early opener just after the hour mark, it appeared as though the spoils were set to be shared before James Henry stepped up in second-half injury time to fire home from the edge of the box and ensure that Bolton began 2017 in the second tier’s top two.

2017/18: SHEFFIELD UNITED 0-1 BOLTON WANDERERS

Gary Madine’s strike halfway through the first period at Bramall Lane saw Wanderers pick up their first league away win of the season.

The striker’s effort stunned the Sheffield United faithful in this post-Christmas encounter and although the home side tried to force a leveller during the remainder of the clash, Bolton stood firm and took all three points with them back to Macron Stadium.


Advertisement block