Report: Bolton Wanderers v Aston Villa

Adam Le Fondre's first half goal was enough for Wanderers to beat promotion chasing Aston Villa in front of the Sky Sports cameras on Saturday evening

The striker turned home Darren Pratley's flick-on from close range in the 20th minute, with that goal proving decisive as the Whites controlled the clash from thereon in and picked up three wholly deserved points.


Bolton Wanderers remained unchanged from the side that drew against Sheffield Wednesday last weekend. Darren Pratley overcame a knock in midweek to captain the team against an Aston Villa team who made one change to their starting XI.


The pitch was blanketed in white after a snowstorm in the hour or so leading up to kick off but that didn’t stop Wanderers from enjoying a flurry of corner kicks in the opening minutes of the game.

The visitors responded with two of their own moments later but on each occasion Wanderers successfully cleared the threat.

Despite the difficult weather conditions, Wanderers got their noses in front after 20 minutes thanks to Le Fondre who poked home after Villa were unable to deal with Ameobi’s corner.

Minutes later and Wanderers should have doubled their lead when Flanagan ghosted in at the far post but his volley was cleared off the line.

The hosts suffered a blow on 27 minutes when Pratley limped off the field with a leg injury. He was replaced by Josh Vela.

Albert Adomah ought to have done better when he got the better of Flanagan at the far post only to head Snodgrass’ corner wide.

Buoyed by this, Villa were slowly getting back into the game and Alnwick had to be at his agile best to keep out Grabban.

Sam Johnstone had to dive at full stretch to keep out an Ameobi free kick as Wanderers sought to increase their lead.


Neither side made any substitutions during the interval and the snowfall didn’t temper either.

Both sets of supporters were in full voice however in spite of the gelid conditions.

Villa started well and with Adomah looking for the ball at every occasion on the left hand side, it was clear just where the visitors had targeted if they were to get back into the game.

Steve Bruce made his first change after 54 minutes with Hepburn-Murphy coming on for Hourihane.

With both sides seeing plenty of the ball, clear cut chances were few and far between as the half wore on.

Le Fondre was unlucky after latching onto a long ball only to see his effort drift wide of Johnstone’s left hand post.

Wanderers then won a series of corners as they upped the ante in terms of attacking play. On one such corner Buckley saw a powerful corner defelct behind.

Bruce made another change when he brought on Hogan for Adomah.

Wanderers fans had their hearts in their mouths when Scott Hogan had beaten Alnwich, but Flanagan’s great diving block prevented the ball from going over the line.

Parkinson made his second sub of the evening when Robinson came on for Buckley.

Villa made their final change when Snodgrass was replaced by Davis.

But try as they might, they couldn't find a way past a solid Bolton rearguard as Wanderers picked up all three points come full time.


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