PHIL CALLS FOR ONE LAST PUSH
BOLTON boss Phil Parkinson sounded a rallying call to his players to give everything in their promotion chase after being held to a draw by AFC Wimbledon.
Dons top scorer Tom Elliott cancelled out Gary Madine’s early opener to rescue a point for the London side, as Bolton remain fourth in the table.
“We’ve worked very, very hard as a club to get ourselves in this position and now we’ve got to give everything possible to try and make the most of this run-in of games now,” said Parkinson.
“If we can achieve it, it will be great, but we know it’s going to be tough and we’re ready for the challenge.
“We’re still up there fighting. Most teams in an embargo and having had the problems we’ve had are in relegation battles, and we’re up there fighting for promotion.
“In the second half I thought we were great, it’s just that little bit of quality we needed when we got the opportunities.”
Dons goalkeeper James Shea showed good reactions after parrying away David Wheater’s fourth-minute effort.
But he was powerless to stop Madine’s expert header which squeezed past him from Filipe Morais’ corner on the quarter hour.
Dominic Poleon swivelled in the box just before the half-hour mark and called Ben Alnwick into action as the visitors responded.
And the Dons levelled through a header too when George Francomb picked out Elliott, who towered above the Bolton rearguard to thump home six minutes before halftime.
Morais saw his fre- kick from 25 yards tipped onto the bar by Shea at full stretch after the break and the pacy winger cut inside to unleash a curling 66thminute drive which the goalkeeper was also alert to parry to safety.
Josh Vela fired a 72nd minute effort just over as the Trotters continued to press and Adam Le Fondre combined with Madine who teed up Morais, only to blast over with fewer than ten minutes left as the Dons held out for a share of the spoils.
And boss Neal Ardley was pleased with his side’s recent form, which has included tri- umphs over Walsall and promotion-chasing Scunthorpe before this draw with the Trotters.
“Seven points with Scunthorpe away and Bolton away is a great, great week for us,” he said.
“It’s a great point for us. To go one down at a place like this, not fold, stick with it and then after about 20 minutes I thought we started controlling it.
“From then on it was whether we could have that bit of quality to get the goal and we’ve obviously got it and we were delighted.
“We’ve dug in, we’ve defended out set-pieces well, we’ve made some good blocks, and Shea-sy’s moment in the first minute of the second half was a really great save from the free-kick.”
IN THE NET: Tom Elliott scores AFC Wimbledon’s equaliser Bolton Wanderers striker