BOLTON UNLUCKY NOT TO EARN THE WIN
WHAT price a misjudged curse? If the FA really did threaten Phil Brown with a ten-game ban, it could be a long time before the Southend boss sees a technical area again.
It would seem a harsh sanction for a man never sent off before last season, but even the LMA will struggle to save him after some caustic – and calculated – postmatch comments. Did the referee play a part? Truth is, both sides had their breaks. Given the new rules on grappling, Mark Beevers should have earned a penalty and plenty of refs would have considered Keshi Anderson’s goalscoring leap against Smith a foul on the keeper. Honours just about even.
Bolton deserved more; their attacking intent and high tempo merited victory. But the lack of clear chances is also testament to the organisation and tenacity of Southend’s impenetrable back three.
Once inflamed passions have been soothed, both managers will reflect on impressive displays.