March 2005
Man City 0 Bolton 1
March 7th 2005 att. 43,050
We had to suffer yet another home defeat tonight against a Bolton side who were not outstanding and a really lack lustre performance by a City side lacking Shaun Wright-Phillips. Life without SWP looks pretty grim at the moment unless the senior players pull out all the stops in the next few games. If this form continues there is little chance of reaching one of the available European qualifying places. There were very few plus points in this pretty poor quality game. The return of Reyna from long term injury was welcome and there was a bravado display in the final minutes by Lee Croft who had a final ten minutes or so to show the manager what he could do. It would not surprise me if Croft gets the managers vote for the right wing position now SWP is out of the frame for the next few weeks.
Another Monday evening fixture for TV and another low attendance despite it being a local derby.
Shock, Horror as young Willo Flood gets pulled up for a foul in the opening moments.
Claudio Reyna making a welcome return to midfield was one of the few players to justify his place.
Sommeil and partner plead innocence as the referee approaches to admonish the pair.
Robbie Fowler makes a dash for goal and is brought down by N'Gotty but the resultant free kick taken by Sibierski is blocked by the wall.
Bolton always look dangerous at corners so the City defence had to defend well.
Kiki Musampa improves every match and was even seen to be helping in defence. He is now getting use to the pace and pressure of the Premier League but often his final ball lacks penetration.
Looks as though Jaaskalainen is about to loose control of the ball but he re-covered well
David James saves from Nolan
After 20 minutes Jaaskalainen mishandled what appeared to be a back pass from Candella. Fowler went for the rebound but failed to score what would have been a vital first goal. A bad and important miss in what was going to be a tight game. City had the best of the first 20 minutes but the lack of finishing power was to cost us dearly.
Both defences came under pressure at set pieces but as half time approached it looked stale mate.
Just on half time Danny Mills let in Giannakopoulos down the left and his cross was converted with ease by EL Diouf who proceeded to taunt City supporters despite the protestations of the referees assistant. Half time then with Bolton leading by that goal.
The poor attendance of Bolton supporters in the top tier meant they were almost outnumbered by stewards.
James saves at a corner early in the second half.
McManaman ( on for Flood ) and Mills have an argument with N'Gotty as referee Wiley rushes in to keep the peace.
Dunne was again a tower of strength in the City defence, one thunderous tackle being reminiscent of Bert Sproston.
El Diouf continued to cause City problems and Distin had his hands full trying to stop him.
Plenty of bodies but no ball!
David James saves well from a Kevin Davies shot after 72 minutes
Another narrow escape for City as a N'Gotty header flies just wide
Kiki Musampa was so very nearly the hero of the hour but his diving header goes just wide in the last minute.
The ball flies wide of the City goal as full time approaches.
Dunne fails to connect at a corner
James 6: Mills 5, Dunne 7, Distin 6, Sommeil 5: Flood 4 (McManaman 6), Reyna 6, Bosvelt 5 (Bradley Wright-Phillips 6), Musampa 6, Sibierski 6 (Croft 6), Fowler 6
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