Report: Atherton Collieries 0-3 Bolton Wanderers

Wanderers got their pre-season schedule underway with a comfortable victory against non-league neighbours Atherton Collieries in a Behind Closed Doors ‘Practice Game’ at Skuna Stadium.

Looking to take control of the game from the first whistle, Ian Evatt’s men went close in the early stages through George Thomason who saw a shot come back off the bar, with Eoin Doyle looking particularly lively in the final third of the field.

The Irishman had already tested the Colls ‘keeper on a number of occasions and just seconds after the hosts were denied an unlikely lead by the woodwork, Doyle rocketed a shot into the top corner from 25 yards out to give Wanderers the lead in spectacular style.

With Ian Evatt opting to play two different elevens for each half, Wanderers’ established their superiority in fitness levels in the second forty-five, adding two goals before the full-time whistle.

Matthew Alexander made a number of excellent saves to keep the home side at bay before one of the squad’s trialists scored an excellent goal to double the advantage. Beating his man down the right hand side, he got to the by-line before cutting back onto his left and finding the top corner with a curling strike from 15 yards.

Dennis Politic put the icing on the cake with a low drive from the edge of the box which found the bottom corner and wrapped up victory for a new-look Wanderers side in their pre-season opener.


First Half XI: Trialist, Trialist, Taft, Delaney, Trialist, Thomason, Comley, Gordon, Crawford, Trialist, Doyle.

Second Half XI: Alexander, Trialist (Senior 83), Trialist, Trialist, Politic, White (Brockbank 81), Trialist, Trialist, Darcy, Faal, Trialist.


Goals: Doyle (37), Trialist (60), Politic (82). 


Head Coach Ian Evatt spoke to after this Saturday’s victory at Atherton Collieries and saw plenty of positives with the outing but equally room for improvement.

He said: ‘There was lots of good bits today. We haven’t done much shape work in training because of how physically demanding it’s been, but we’ve done bits and bobs.

‘Am I happy? No. But I’m a perfectionist and we’ll keep working hard until we get it right.’

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