TONY BEMOANS LUCKY STRIKE
BOLTON ..........2 MIDDLESBRO’..1
MIDDLESBROUGH boss Tony Mowbray cursed Chris Eagles’ slice of Ronaldinho-style luck as Bolton Wanderers crept back into the play-off places.
Eagles’ shot-cum-cross was levelled by Kieron Dyer early in the second-half, but Marvin Sordell’s penalty propelled the Trotters into sixth with just two games to go.
And Mowbray – who ripped into referee Darren Deadman for both penalty and red card decisions – compared the winger’s goal to the Brazilian’s lob against England at World Cup 2002.
“England went out of the World Cup in South Korea with the Ronaldinho cross which drifted over David Seaman,” said Mowbray.
“Everyone was debating whether he meant it or not – was Chris Eagles’ a cross that went wrong? I think so.
“And I have to say after watching the penalty a dozen times it was the wrong decision, but clearly it wasn’t the referee’s day – and he’s not the first guy to do it for us.
“I thought we played alright. We probably deserved more than that and deserved a better official.
“We were pretty comfortable for most of the game but Bolton started very well as they always do at home. Our keeper made two great saves in the first few minutes.
“Then I thought we got a foothold in the game, giving them problems with enough of the ball to make it an uncomfortable afternoon for them.
“We’re on that sort of run. We’ve played well but things go against us.”
Bolton took the game by the scruff of the neck three minutes in as Craig Davies forced Jason Steele into a fullstretched save.
And the Middlesbrough youth product pulled off an even better stop from the resulting corner – beating Medo Kamara’s sweetlystruck volley away from the upright.
Moments after the restart, Bolton got their break as Eagles – whether through luck or judgment – floated the ball over Steele from just outside the box.
But the Trotters were breached for the first time in nearly nine hours at the Reebok Stadum when former England international Dyer met Mustapha Carayol’s cross in the 56th minute.
To round off a madcap quarterhour, the Trotters won a penalty after Jonathan Woodgate tripped Chung- Yong Lee – which Sordell powered home for his eighth goal of the campaign.
Woodgate’s afternoon took another ugly turn almost immediately as he chopped down Sordell to pick up another yellow following his foul on Lee.
Dougie Freedman admitted ice-cool Sordell was just the man to call on for the penalty after watching his side secure an eighth successive home victory.
“I’m not sure Marvin’s got a routine but if he has he can continue with it forever, I’m alright with that,” he said.
“Knowing him, he’s quite a laid-back character and is probably just thinking about a few other things before he strikes it into the net!
“It was a very good spirited performance – that’s what we’ve got on our side right now.
“You cannot buy it, you cannot loan it, but we’ve got the commitment and spirit which has been built up over the last few months.
“We’ve had to play three very high-intensity games in a week, but they’ve put their bodies on the line which is what is getting us into the top six right now.
“Promotion is still in our hands which is a good thing.”
SPOT ON: Bolton Wanderers’ Marvin Sordell scores his side’s second goal from the penalty spot
LUCKY BOY: Chris Eagles, centre, celebrates after his strike