Report: Bolton Wanderers v Millwall

Bolton Wanderers took all three points against Millwall in their Sky Bet Championship clash on Saturday afternoon, with Pawel Olkowski and Gary O'Neil on the scoresheet for the Whites.

Team News

For Wanderers' starting eleven against the Lions, manager Phil Parkinson made four changes to his side from our last Sky Bet Championship clash against Swansea City.

David Wheater and Craig Noone missed out through suspension, with Jack Hobbs and Will Buckley coming in to replace the duo.

Furthermore, Clayton Donaldson and Luca Connell dropped to the bench, with Joe Williams and Andrew Taylor coming back into the fray.

First Half

Wanderers started the game brightly, having a few early half chances through a Gary O’Neil flicked header and menacing play around the area, with Millwall standing firm at the back.

Will Buckley nearly found an open Josh Magennis on the 20 minute mark, with a low cutting delivery fizzed across the box, but the Lions defence were able to deal with the danger.

In a relatively quiet first period of this clash, chances were at a premium for both teams.

Millwall had one of the better chances just prior to the half hour mark, with striker Tom Elliott evading Jack Hobbs from a corner and latching onto the ball with a header that he could not direct towards goal.

The Whites pressed on, as O’Neil found himself in space shortly after but his crossing effort was unable to find a Bolton player free in the penalty area.

Another looping ball into the area from the experienced midfielder had Josh Magennis challenging in the air with Millwall keeper Jordan Archer, who was unable to claim the ball in the air with Wanderers failing to capitalise.

Full back Pawel Olkowski tried to test the abilities of Archer with a vicious long range shot, but his effort ended up off target.

Ameobi followed up the Polishman with a powerful strike from distance on 38 minutes, but like Olkowski, he was just wide of the mark.

Into added time, and Wanderers should have gone ahead through Callum Connolly.

A superbly whipped corner kick from O’Neil had Archer all at sea, with Callum Connolly just needing to make contact on the ball to steer it home.

Unfortunately for him and Wanderers, he was unable to do so.

Second Half

Phil Parkinson’s men could not have started the second period of play any better, with Pawel Olkowski opening the scoring with a superbly hit finish.

The Polish international got on the end of Connolly’s pass, before beating Meredith and finding the bottom left corner with his weaker foot.

Will Buckley nearly immediately doubled the Trotters' lead, with a snapshot on his left foot narrowly missing the Millwall goal.

The Lions came as close to an equaliser without changing the score, as Lee Gregory powered a header into what looked an open goal, before midfielder Joe Williams cleared it off the line – fantastic from the Everton loanee.

Wanderers then doubled their lead however on the hour mark through O’Neil.

A clearance up field from Joe Williams found O’Neil free with space to run into.

The wily veteran got to the edge of the area, turned Mahlon Romero inside out and dispatched the ball expertly past Archer’s outstretched hand.

Confidence was high with Wanderers, as Ameobi pulled a ball down from mid-air before hitting a speculative right footed effort from distance that couldn’t test Archer’s glove work.

The winger was at it again, this time creating havoc down the right flank before finding Will Buckley in the area.

He then found Joe Williams, who fired from just inside the area but couldn’t keep it down, as the ball sailed over the bar.

Neil Harris’ men tried to respond, with a Romeo flighted cross finding Elliott, who chested it down to Ben Thompson. The midfielder hit a shot from 15 yards, forcing Matthews into a diving save to his right.

Wanderers replied with Ameobi bursting through the middle of the pitch, as he played Buckley into the penalty area.

The wideman was unable to get much power behind his eventual shot, which Archer jumped onto with 20 minutes to play.

It was all action at the University of Bolton Stadium, with Olkowski firing low shortly after, with Archer on hand to palm it behind.

With 13 minutes to go, Lions substitute Ben Marshall hit a left footed hopeful effort from just outside the area, which petered aimlessly wide.

Jed Wallace tried to spark a comeback on his own, with a strongly hit effort from the edge of the box that had Matthews called into action, saving well as danger was cleared shortly after.

With three minutes to spare though, Lee Gregory pegged one back for the visitors.

The striker got on the end of a Wallace cross into the danger zone and aptly finished from close range.

From the restart, Millwall nearly had their equaliser through Elliott as the towering forward nodded the ball at goal from a Ferguson cross, but only found the roof of the goal.

This left a nervous last few minutes for the Whites, with Millwall doing everything in their power to find another goal.

However, it was not enough as Wanderers dealt with the final push from their opponents and took all three points.

Full Time

Wanderers XI: Matthews, Taylor (C), Beevers, Ameobi, Buckley (Dyer 82), Hobbs, Olkowski, Connolly, O’Neil, J. Williams (Wilson 86), Magennis

Unused substitutes: B. Williams, Little, Oztumer, Donaldson, Connell

Read Time: 5 mins