TONY BE­MOANS LUCKY STRIKE

BOLTON ..........2 MID­DLES­BRO’..1

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Chris Bai­ley

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.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Im­ages

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

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