Tag Archives: klasnic

Free transfers available for Premier League clubs

Free and easy! Some of the players Liverpool could get on the cheap

|

UPDATED:

21:00 GMT, 3 September 2012

With the transfer window closed, that is the end of the signings for Barclays Premier League clubs, right Wrong.

They can still sign free agents and there are some tasty names on the list. Some of them have seen better days – well most of them – but many of them come with an international pedigree and are desperate for a chance to prove themselves.

That means there could be some decent pay-as-you-play deals. And even Liverpool might be able to sign someone. Lots of these names are familiar and come with trophy cabinets as big as their reputations.

Here Simon Jones and Sam Cunningham have produced the list of the best out there. They may be appearing at a club near you soon…

ALESSANDRO DEL PIERO (Italy) Age: 37 Caps: 91.
Biggest transfer: 19 years at Juventus, 513 games.
Released by: Juventus.

MICHAEL OWEN (England) Age 32, caps 89. Biggest transfer: 16m, Real Madrid to Newcastle 2005 Released by: Manchester United.

Freebies: Owen (left) and Del Piero (right) are both available

Freebies: Owen (left) and Del Piero (right) are both available

Freebies: Owen (left) and Del Piero (right) are both available

EMILE HESKEY (England) Age 34, caps 62.
Biggest transfer: 11m, Leicester to Liverpool 2000. Released by: Aston Villa.

HARRY KEWELL (Australia) Age 33, caps 58.
Biggest transfer: 5m, Leeds to Liverpool 2003.
Released by: Galatasaray.

IVAN KLASNIC (Croatia) Age 32, caps 41.
Biggest transfer: Three moves on a free, 78 games at Bolton. Released by: Bolton.

MIKAEL FORSSELL (Finland) Age 31, caps 81.
Biggest transfer: 3m, Chelsea to Birmingham 2005. Released by: Leeds.

TUNCAY (Turkey) Age 30, caps 80.
Biggest transfer: 5m, Middlesbrough to Stoke 2009. Released by: Wolfsburg.

NIGEL REO-COKER (England) Age 28, caps 0.
Biggest transfer: 7.5m, West Ham to Aston Villa 2007. Released by: Bolton.

Experienced: Nigel Reo-Coker

Experienced: Nigel Reo-Coker

OWEN HARGREAVES (England) Age 31, caps 42.
Biggest transfer: 17m, Bayern Munich to Man Utd 2007. Released by: Manchester City.

AKOS BUZSAKY (Hungary) Age 30, caps 20.
Biggest transfer: 500,000, Plymouth to QPR 2008. Released by: QPR.

JOHN MENSAH (Ghana) Age 29, caps 78.
Biggest transfer: Eight different clubs, 34 games at Sunderland. Released by: Lyon.

JASON KOUMAS (Wales) Age 32, caps 34
Biggest transfer: 5.3m, Cardiff to Wigan 2007
Released by: Wigan.

EIDUR GUDJOHNSEN (Iceland) Age 33, caps 67.
Biggest transfer: 8m, Chelsea to Barcelona 2006. Released by: AEK Athens.

JAMES BEATTIE (England) Age 34, caps 5.
Biggest transfer: 6m, Southampton to Everton 2005. Released by: Sheffield United.

Ice man: Gudjohnsen (left) has several years of Premier League football under his belt

Ice man: Gudjohnsen (left) has several years of Premier League football under his belt

FLORENT SINAMA PONGOLLE (France) Age 27, caps 1.
Biggest transfer: 8m, Recreativo to Atletico Madrid 2008. Released by: Sporting Lisbon.

CRAIG GORDON (Scotland) Age 29, caps 40.
Biggest transfer: 9m, Hearts to Sunderland 2007. Released by: Sunderland.

JAMES McFADDEN (Scotland) Age 29, caps 48.
Biggest transfer: 4.75m, Everton to Birmingham 2008. Released by: Everton.

THOMAS HITZLSPERGER (Germany) Age 30, caps 52. Biggest transfer: Seven clubs, 99 League games at Aston Villa. Released by: Wolfsburg.

ANDREAS HINKEL (Germany) Age 30, caps 21.
Biggest transfer: 1.9m, Seville to Celtic 2008.
Released by: Freiburg.

PER KROLDRUP (Denmark) Age 33, caps 33.
Biggest transfer: 5m, Udinese to Everton 2005.
Released by: Fiorentina.

Bolton release 12 players but Kevin Davies extends contract

Davies pledges future to Bolton as club axe 12 players ahead of drop into Championship

|

UPDATED:

09:56 GMT, 18 May 2012

Bolton striker Kevin Davies has signed a new one-year contract at the club but Wanderers' relegation from the Barclays Premier League is being felt with 12 players on their way out.

Davies' current deal expired this summer but he has agreed to stay on, with defender Sam Ricketts also agreeing a two-year extension as manager Owen Coyle prepares his side for their npower Championship campaign.

Midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker has activated a release clause in his contract while a further 11 players have all been released after their deals ran out.

I'm staying! Davies will remain to help Bolton regain Premier League status

I'm staying! Davies will remain to help Bolton regain Premier League status

Gretar Steinsson, Paul Robinson, Sean Davis, Robbie Blake, Ricardo Gardner, Ivan Klasnic, Mark Connolly, Tope Obadeyi, Rhys Bennett, Dino Fazlic and Tom Eckersley are those who have left, while Tuncay Sanli, Dedryck Boyata and Ryo Miyaichi have all returned to their respective parent clubs after loans spells.

Wandering off: Reo-Coker has activated a release clause

Wandering off: Reo-Coker has activated a release clause

In a statement Bolton said discussions were continuing with goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen, deposed as number one by Adam Bogdan, and Zat Knight over their contracts.

'I was clear with Nigel. I asked him straight away whether he wanted to stay and be a part of what we are going to do next season,' Coyle said in a statement.

'He was honest and up front with us, because that is the type of man he is, and said that he wanted to exercise the clause in his contract, and so we wish him well.

'I would also like to thank the players that are leaving the club for their work at Bolton. We wish them all well.

'One of those is Ricardo Gardner, who has been with the football club for 14 years.

'He has offered incredible service to Bolton and I'd like to personally thank him for all of his efforts, particularly during the time I have worked with him.'

Relegated Bolton keep stalwart Kevin Davies

Relegated Bolton keep stalwart Kevin Davies but the exodus has begun

|

UPDATED:

22:13 GMT, 14 May 2012

Staying: Kevin Davies (left) will be staying at Bolton

Staying: Kevin Davies (left) will be staying at Bolton

Bolton will begin a clearout of their
first-team squad this week following relegation from the Premier League
– but long-serving captain Kevin Davies is staying at the club.

Davies is believed to have agreed a
new 12-month contract that will see the 35-year-old striker take on more
coaching duties under Owen Coyle, whose future as manager is not
thought to be under threat.

'Right now I don't want to talk
about it too much, but I'm pretty sure I'll be here next year,' said
Davies in the aftermath of a 2-2 draw at Stoke that saw Bolton finish
one point below QPR on a dramatic final day.

'The club has got a decision to
make on a number of players. We'll rebuild and hopefully get a good
enough squad together to get us back up.'

As many as 11 players will soon
become free agents, while relegation means others will have to take a
wage cut under the terms of their contracts.

Martin Petrov, Jussi Jaaskelainen
and Sam Ricketts are set to join Davies by agreeing new deals, but seven
more players are almost certain to leave.

Ivan Klasnic, Paul Robinson, Robbie Blake and Sean Davis are expected to be released, and loan signings Ryo Miyaichi, Tuncay Sanli and Dedryck Boyata will return to their parent clubs.

The futures of Zat Knight, Gretar Steinsson and Ricardo Gardner remain unclear after all three were offered new terms on significantly lower wages.

Uncertain future: Gretar Steinsson (centre) could move on

Uncertain future: Gretar Steinsson (centre) could move on

Coyle is keen to keep Knight after David Wheater was ruled out for up to nine months with a knee injury, but the big centre-back has already been linked with moves to West Ham and Cardiff.

Bolton have tried to protect themselves against the impact of relegation, and owner Eddie Davies has pledged to continue his support having invested another 10million in March.

Linked: West Ham and Cardiff interested in Zat Knight

Linked: West Ham and Cardiff interested in Zat Knight

The Isle of Man-based tycoon has bankrolled the majority of the club's 110m debt with only 10m owing to the banks.

However, it is believed that Bolton will lose 30m next season in sponsorship and television revenue, and selling players to help balance the books cannot be ruled out.

Of their three major assets, Mark Davies, Chung-Yong Lee and Stuart Holden, Davies looks the most vulnerable with Newcastle known to be monitoring his situation.

Kevin Davies added: 'It feels like a bad dream. I honestly felt this day wouldn't come. I thought we'd do enough to save ourselves but we haven't.

'You just want to bury your head somewhere, and it will take a few days and weeks to reflect. We find ourselves in the Championship. It's a new challenge for the club and hopefully come pre-season we'll be right.'

The Bolton skipper insisted that Coyle side's cannot hide behind the long-term absences of Lee, Holden and Tyrone Mears, or the trauma of Fabrice Muamba's collapse at Tottenham in March.

'I've never been one to make excuses,' added Davies. 'You have to look at yourself and take responsibility.

'We're absolutely over the moon that Fabrice has made that recovery. It could have been so different. But when you're out on the pitch you have to put those things behind you.'

Bolton will return to the Premier League, but who knows when

Bolton will return to the Premier League, but who knows how long it will take

|

UPDATED:

07:12 GMT, 14 May 2012

A lifelong Bolton fan on the end of a lamentable league campaign…

One near-fatal cardiac arrest, two broken legs, two serious knee-ligament injuries and now one relegation.

Sunday was an appropriate end to a dreadful campaign.

Down and out: Bolton fans react after their team's relegation

Down and out: Bolton fans react after their team's relegation

Down and out: Bolton fans react after their team's relegation

All Bolton’s players needed to do was keep up their end of the bargain and beat Stoke. Had we done that, we would have been safe. I’m glad it’s over, though. It has been one long tale of woe.

The fixture list at the start of this season did us no favours, but it would be wrong to think that this has not been on the cards for a while. The decline has accelerated alarmingly since December 2010.

Nice bloke that he is, Owen Coyle is a tactically inept manager. A lot of his signings haven’t been up to scratch, a fair few of his team selections were questionable and his substitutions are often very poor (bringing Ivan Klasnic on when protecting a lead against West Bromwich Albion was a horrendous mistake).

Inept: Coyle was found out tactically this season

Inept: Coyle was found out tactically this season

Coyle must take a lot of the blame for this season. In a way, relegation is relief. Next season would have just been another struggle.

We have the makings of a decent Championship team. But this season, that side were in the Barclays Premier League and out of their depth.

However, I did make a deal in these pages on March 19. I wrote then that if Fabrice Muamba survived after his cardiac arrest at White Hart Lane then I’d take relegation. I meant it then and I mean it now.

We’ll be back, he’ll be back and it will all be fine.

I’m just not sure when…

Stoke 2 Bolton 2: Jonathan Walters sends Trotters down

Stoke 2 Bolton 2: Trotters old boy Walters barges Coyle out of the big time

|

UPDATED:

23:40 GMT, 13 May 2012

It was no consolation to Bolton and their supporters whatsoever that when all the madness started in Manchester they were already down.

A crestfallen Owen Coyle had already shaken hands with his friend Tony Pulis on a draw that ended Bolton’s 11-year stay in the Barclays Premier League before the pandemonium erupted around relegation rivals Queens Park Rangers in those astounding final moments at the Etihad Stadium.

Over and out: Bolton's players are dejected after failing to beat Stoke and suffering relegation

Over and out: Bolton's players are dejected after failing to beat Stoke and suffering relegation

Promise: Bolton fans look ahead after their side was relegated to the Championship

MATCH FACTS

Stoke: Sorensen, Etherington, Shawcross, Upson (Shotton 64), Huth, Walters, Whelan, Whitehead, Wilkinson, Fuller (Jerome 52), Crouch. Subs not used: Begovic, Jones, Delap, Woodgate, Palacios.

Scorer: Walters 13, 77 (pen).

Booked: Huth.

Bolton: Bogdan, Boyata, Knight, Ream, Ricketts, Eagles (Lee 81), Mark Davies, Reo-Coker, Petrov, Kevin Davies (Sordell 83), Klasnic (Ngog 69). Subs not used: Jaaskelainen, Alonso, Miyaichi, Vela.

Scorers: M Davies 39, K Davies 45.

Booked: Ricketts.

Referee: Chris Foy.

Attendance: 27,789.

Click here for the final Premier League table

But if only Coyle’s side had held on to their lead. If only Thomas Sorensen had not denied Tim Ream a late winner. If only.

‘Those are the margins of this
league,’ lamented Coyle before heading for a player-of-the- year dinner
last night. ‘I wasn’t aware of events at City but I told my players that
we had to do our job.

‘We had to win and if City won, as we
always believed they would, we would still be in the Premier League.
Ultimately that’s what happened. There are always pivotal moments in
pivotal games.

‘We’ll take our medicine. When the
dust has settled and we take all the hurt and the disappointment and
criticism, we’ll come back bigger and stronger.’

Coyle’s biggest regret was the two
decisions by referee Chris Foy and his assistants that went against his
young goalkeeper Adam Bogdan, although he would be the first to
acknowledge that the reasons for relegation stretch back an entire
season and not just over one afternoon in the Potteries.

What a mess: Jonathan Walters beats goalkeeper Adam Bogdan to the ball to put Stoke in front

What a mess: Jonathan Walters beats goalkeeper Adam Bogdan to the ball to put Stoke in front

The Bolton manager had good reason to
be furious about Jon Walters’s opening goal in the 13th minute. Matthew
Etherington’s cross from the right deflected off the Stoke striker’s
thigh and Bogdan appeared to have the ball in both hands when Walters
bundled him into the back of the net.

The goal was allowed to stand and
Coyle had to be ushered away from linesman Darren Cann before Foy came
over to tell him to calm down.

‘I find it incredible that it (the
foul) was not given,’ said Coyle. ‘The ball was in his hands by the side
of his head. I was 50 yards away and I could see it. I’ve been in to
see the officials but came out none the wiser. It was a horrible
decision.’

Level pegging: The ball rebounded off Mark Davies and into the net to gift Bolton an equaliser

Level pegging: The ball rebounded off Mark Davies and into the net to gift Bolton an equaliser

There was no disputing Bolton’s two
goals in the space of five minutes before half-time but they were
equally peculiar. The first followed Stoke’s failure to deal with a long
ball forward from Bogdan in the 40th minute. Ivan Klasnic played in
Mark Davies and as Robert Huth attempted to clear, he succeeded only in
hacking the ball against Davies and into his own net.

Huth was involved in the second as
well but he could have sensed little danger as he tried to close down
Kevin Davies wide on the right. The Bolton striker, one of several
players possibly making his final appearance for the club, floated an
innocuous cross to the near post and was as surprised as anyone to see
it creep past the flailing Sorensen.

In front: Kevin Davies (right) celebrates after his goal put Bolton in the lead at Stoke

In front: Kevin Davies (right) celebrates after his goal put Bolton in the lead at Stoke

There was a moment of stunned
disbelief before the 2,700 away fans began to celebrate. News had
already filtered through moments earlier that QPR were a goal down. For
20 minutes — including the half-time interval — Bolton were staying up.

‘I thought it was going to be Bolton’s day after those two bizarre goals,’ admitted Stoke boss Tony Pulis.

Now everyone had an eye on the Etihad.
‘You’re not singing any more,’ taunted the Stoke fans when QPR
equalised. Bolton supporters launched into a rendition of Blue Moon.

Not so great: Bolton's fans were full of hope but saw their dreams die in front of their eyes

Not so great: Bolton's fans were full of hope but saw their dreams die in front of their eyes

Going down: Bolton have been relegated after mustering only a draw at Stoke

The goal that rendered all that irrelevant arrived 13 minutes from time and again Bogdan was at the centre of the controversy.

The Hungarian keeper made a brilliant
save to deny Peter Crouch at close range but was then judged to have
brought the striker down as they both scrambled to reach the loose ball.
On this occasion Foy’s decision was more understandable as he pointed
to the spot and Walters claimed his second goal of the day.

‘Adam has turned to find the ball,’
pleaded Coyle. ‘Peter’s a tall lad and in his efforts to clamber over
Adam he’s actually gone into him.’

Spot on: Walters scores his penalty to earn a point for Stoke and send Bolton into the Championship

Spot on: Walters scores his penalty to earn a point for Stoke and send Bolton into the Championship

There was still time for Lee
Chung-yong to blast over from Marvin Sordell’s cross and Sorensen’s save
from that Ream header but in the end time ran out.

It did so before Manchester City
turned the title race on its head one last time with the goals that
could have sent QPR down and kept Bolton up. If only.

Battle: Stoke City's Peter Crouch fires in a shot past Bolton Wanderers Tim Ream

Battle: Stoke City's Peter Crouch fires in a shot past Bolton Wanderers Tim Ream

Bolton stars know they"re playing for club"s future in relegation dogfight

We just have to win for everyone at Bolton… Stars know they're playing for club's future

|

UPDATED:

21:02 GMT, 12 May 2012


Feeling the strain: Bolton must win at Stoke to have any chance of avoiding relegation to the Championship

Feeling the strain: Bolton must win at Stoke to have any chance of avoiding relegation from the top tier

Not for the first time this season, Bolton's training ground has been an emotional place in the last few days.

Paul Robinson and Robbie Blake, out of contract in the summer and not required for the relegation cliffhanger at Stoke, were collecting their belongings and saying their farewells.

Leading scorer Ivan Klasnic said: 'It was upsetting. If you know people for two-and-a-half years and work with them every day, it is strange to leave them.'

Bolton players, lest we forget, thought they had lost Fabrice Muamba for good this season, heightening the bond between them all.

The trickle of departures at the Reebok is set to become a flood should they not gain the victory required at Stoke to stay in the Premier League.

Manager Owen Coyle and 11 players, including Klasnic, are out of contract and three more are due to return to their parent clubs after spending the season on loan.

If Bolton drop out of the top flight for the first time since 2001, there is no chance they can afford to keep higher earners like Kevin Davies and Jussi Jaaskelainen, who has been at the club for 15 years.

This famous and historic club, winners of the 'White Horse' FA Cup final, the first at Wembley, in 1923, and home of legendary striker Nat Lofthouse, are chronically in debt, possibly by as much as 100million.

Owner Eddie Davies would no longer want to bankroll operations in the Championship and more fire sales like Gary Cahill's 7m move to Chelsea in January would appear inevitable.

Battling emotions: Bolton had to cope with Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest

Battling emotions: Bolton had to cope with Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest

Bolton will be safe only if they win and QPR lose at Manchester City. Klasnic, a former Bundesliga winner with Werder Bremen and Croatia's goalscoring hero at Euro 2008, is concerned for everyone at the club, from secretaries to those in the ticket office.

'Sunday's game is our Champions League final,' he said. 'We need to play for our futures and for the people who work at Bolton. They might lose their jobs. If you don't care about that, you're not human.

'I have been relegated once before, with Nantes in France, and I want that to be the only time. This will be worse. Nantes were newly promoted but Bolton have been in the Premier League for 11 years and need to stay there. People looked at me as if it was my fault because I was the top earner.'

Coyle was talked about as a potential Liverpool manager as Bolton produced some of the most entertaining football in the Premier League and reached the FA Cup semi-final last season.

Playing for his future: Ivan Klasnic (left) is out of contract this summer

Playing for his future: Ivan Klasnic (left) is out of contract this summer

A 5-0 defeat at Wembley against Stoke can be viewed now as a turning point. They ended last season badly, and serious injuries to Stuart Holden and Chung-yong Lee stretched them badly this season, while Muamba's collapse against Spurs in March took a toll and robbed them of another big player.

'It's been difficult for everybody,' said Klasnic. 'We beat QPR 4-0 on the opening day and were top for a short while. Then we had to play all the top teams and lost. The confidence dropped.

'I know the manager's and a lot of players' contracts are finished so Bolton need to decide what they want to do. I haven't spoken to anyone at the club about the future – I don't think the manager knows anything until after this match.'

Strangely Klasnic, one of Bolton's few players with international pedigree, has largely been used as a substitute this season. His nine goals this season betters Davies (seven) and David Ngog (four) and the Croat is sure to feature at some stage at the Britannia, having struck twice in a 5-0 win against Stoke already this season.

'You do get frustrated if you don't start. It is hard to understand but in the end you have to accept the decision from the manager,' he said. 'I don't mean to be arrogant but he [Coyle] knows I need only a half-chance to score.'

Slaven Bilic to quit Croatia after Euro 2012

Next stop, Premier League Bilic will bow out as Croatia boss after Euro 2012

|

UPDATED:

12:07 GMT, 10 May 2012

Slaven Bilic is ready to test himself in club management next season after he confirmed he will quit his role as Croatia coach after Euro 2012.

The 43-year-old, who enjoyed successful stints as a defender with West Ham and Everton, has been linked with a host of big jobs previously in the Barclays Premier League.

Bilic took over as Croatia coach in 2006, succeeding Zlatko Kranjcar in charge, and famously masterminded their path to Euro 2008 at the expense of England.

Walking away: Slaven Bilic will stand down as Croatia coach after Euro 2012

Walking away: Slaven Bilic will stand down as Croatia coach after Euro 2012

PRELIMINARY CROATIA SQUAD

Goalkeepers: Stipe Pletikosa (FC Rostov), Danijel Subasic (Hajduk Split), Ivan Kelava (Dinamo Zagreb); Goran Blazevic (Hajduk Split)
Defenders: Vedran Corluka (Tottenham), Sime Vrsaljko (Dinamo Zagreb), Dejan Lovren (Olympique Lyon), Josip Simunic (Dinamo Zagreb), Ivan Strinic (Dnipro), Gordon Schildenfeld (Eintracht Frankfurt), Domagoj Vida (Dinamo Zagreb), Jurica Buljat (Maccabi), Daniel Pranjic (Bayern Munich)

Midfielders: Darijo Srna (Shakhtar Donetsk), Ognjen Vukojevic (Dynamo Kiev), Ivan Rakitic (Sevilla), Tomislav Dujmovic (Dynamo Moscow), Luka Modric (Tottenham), Milan Badelj (Dinamo Zagreb), Niko Kranjcar (Tottenham), Ivan Perisic (Borussia Dortmund), Ivo Ilicevic (Hamburger).

Forwards: Mario Mandzukic (Wolfsburg), Eduardo Da Silva (Shakhtar Donetsk), Nikica Jelavic (Everton), Nikola Kalinic (Dnipro), Ivica Olic (Bayern Munich).

Bilic announced his departure after revealing Bolton striker Ivan Klasnic had not made his squad for this summer's European Championships in Ukraine and Poland.

Everton's in-form Nikica Jelavic, Tottenham trio Luka Modric, Niko Kranjcar and Vedran Corluka join former Arsenal striker Eduardo in Bilic's preliminary squad.

'This is my last tournament. After this, I shall certainly no longer be the national coach. But before that, we must focus on the big job that's coming up,' Bilic said.

Leading the line: In-form Everton striker Nikica Jelavic is Croatia's biggest strike threat

Leading the line: In-form Everton striker Nikica Jelavic is Croatia's biggest strike threat

Croatia kick off their campaign om June 10 against Ireland and Bilic warned Giovanni Trapattoni that he feels sorry for his underdogs.

He added: 'With all due respect I feel for them, we want to start the tournament with three points. They are our chance.'

Bolton 1 Tottenham 4: Spurs remain in Champions League hunt

Bolton 1 Tottenham 4: Spurs boost top four hopes with emphatic win at Reebok

|

UPDATED:

00:40 GMT, 3 May 2012

Despite this terrific performance, Tottenham left Lancashire no nearer to knowing if they will grace the Champions League again next season. Newcastle’s surprising victory at Chelsea made sure of that.

Bolton, however, did perhaps learn something — if they don’t play better than this over the final two games of the season they will surely be relegated.

That would be a devastating end to a difficult and emotional season for Owen Coyle and his players. Only the cruel would not feel some sympathy for them.

Wonder goal: Luka Modric celebrates after putting Tottenham in front against Bolton

Wonder goal: Luka Modric celebrates after putting Tottenham in front against Bolton

MATCH FACTS

Bolton: Bogdan, Boyata, Wheater, Ream, Ricketts, Eagles (Miyaichi 83), Reo-Coker (Vela 65), Mark Davies, Petrov, Ngog (Klasnic 65), Kevin Davies.

Subs Not Used: Jaaskelainen, Alonso, Knight, Sordell.

Booked: Vela,Eagles.

Goals: Reo-Coker 51.

Tottenham: Friedel, Walker, Gallas (Nelsen 87), Kaboul, Rose, Lennon (Saha 84), Sandro, Modric, Bale, Van der Vaart (Livermore 79), Adebayor.

Subs Not Used: Cudicini, Giovani, Defoe, King.
Booked: Walker.

Goals: Modric 37, Van der Vaart 60, Adebayor 62, 69.

Attendance: 22,349

Referee: Mike Dean

However, the chasm between these two teams was as large as the score suggests and it is clear that Bolton will have to find another gear — at least — when new England manager Roy Hodgson arrives with West Bromwich on Sunday.

This was an even contest only for a 10-minute period at the start of the second half. During that time Bolton’s Nigel Reo-Coker equalised Luka Modric’s first-half fizzer and the home team briefly put Tottenham under real pressure.

Had they scored at that time, and Kevin Davies and Chris Eagles came very close indeed, maybe they could have used the momentum to record a significant victory.

As it was, Tottenham broke in devastating fashion to score twice either side of the hour and the game was over. Coyle argued that this was the crucial period of the game.

The truth is, though, that over 90 minutes Harry Redknapp’s team were distinctly superior.

Those who would wish to see their England team play expansive football will perhaps have watched Tottenham rather ruefully on Wednesday night.

Certainly they played some super football. Nor will it have been lost on Spurs supporters that their team have rediscovered their form now that their manager is no longer in the frame to manage his country.

Back in it: Nigel Reo-Coker scores Bolton's equaliser (above) before celebrating (below)

Back in it: Nigel Reo-Coker scores Bolton's equaliser (above) before celebrating (below)

Nigel Reo-Coker of Bolton Wanderers celebrates

Not surprisingly, Redknapp dismissed a link but his team do seem to be gathering momentum ahead of their final two games of another up-and-down season.

Redknapp said: ‘I don’t really think we had a bad run. Things just didn’t go our way. I don’t know about the England thing. Everybody has disappointing spells.

‘I don’t think the players were affected. Maybe other people at the club think they were. But we played well here today. I’m very pleased.’

Emotional: Fabrice Muamba took to the Reebok pitch before watching from the stands

Emotional: Fabrice Muamba took to the Reebok pitch before watching from the stands

Emotional: Fabrice Muamba took to the Reebok pitch before watching from the stands

Emotional: Fabrice Muamba took to the Reebok pitch before watching from the stands

Teams in relegation battles often find it difficult to play their best football. Nerves, tension and the sheer size of the stakes can suck the composure from players. Nevertheless, effort, hard running and high tempo really should be pre- requisites and it was surprising to see the home team lacking even these assets for most of a first half that Tottenham dominated.

The visitors enjoyed the majority of the possession from the start and were denied the lead by Bolton goalkeeper Adam Bogdan midway through the first half. In truth the young Hungarian probably should have done better than push Gareth Bale’s low shot straight into the path of Rafael van der Vaart in the 20th minute. But the way Bogdan then spread himself to block the Holland forward’s follow-up was impressive.

Back in front: Rafael van der Vaart scores Tottenham's second at the Reebok

Back in front: Rafael van der Vaart scores Tottenham's second at the Reebok

Tottenham's Rafael van der Vaart, bottom right, celebrates with teammates

Bogdan did well once again to beat away Van der Vaart’s shot from 18 yards in the 35th minute and there did appear to be a handball from a Tottenham player before Bolton smuggled the ball behind for a corner soon after.

There was, however, no disputing the quality of Modric’s subsequent goal as he collected Van der Vaart’s short corner on his chest, allowed the ball to bounce and then volleyed it across Bogdan and into the top corner from 25 yards.

It was a lead Tottenham thoroughly deserved but Coyle obviously said something right at half-time — maybe he just pinned the league table on the wall — as his team came out flying for the start of the second period, even if only for 10 minutes.

The equaliser was a good one as Kevin Davies flicked on a throw-in, David Ngog back-heeled the ball into Reo-Coker’s path and the former West Ham midfielder drilled the ball low past Brad Friedel.
Suddenly the Reebok, hitherto rather quiet, woke up and for a while Tottenham wobbled. Davies headed one chance over from a corner while Eagles landed a volley on the top of the net. Bolton were literally inches away from an unlikely lead.

Carbon copy: Emmanuel Adebayor scores Tottenham's third (above) and fourth (below) goals

Carbon copy: Emmanuel Adebayor scores Tottenham's third (above) and fourth (below) goals

Carbon copy: Emmanuel Adebayor scores Tottenham's third (above) and fourth (below) goals

Carbon copy: Emmanuel Adebayor scores Tottenham's third (above) and fourth (below) goals

As it was, Tottenham broke twice in devastating fashion to take the game away from the hosts in the 60th and 62nd minutes.

First Bale got away down the left to cross for Van der Vaart to score first time and then Aaron Lennon sped on to a superb pass from the goalscorer to centre low for Adebayor to convert at the far post.
Bolton were sunk by now and before long it got worse as Adebayor, anonymous for much of the game, was set clear through the middle and he rounded Bogdan to score his second goal.

Coyle said: ‘As good as Tottenham are we have shot ourselves in the foot. Some of the goals were self-inflicted.

‘We were in the ascendancy at that point and could have gone on to win.’

Bolton 1 Swansea 1: Wanderers fail to ease relegation fears

Bolton 1 Swansea 1: Squanderers Wanderers fail to ease relegation fears

|

UPDATED:

16:13 GMT, 21 April 2012

Bolton hung on against Swansea for a
potentially crucial point in their battle against relegation from the
Barclays Premier League.

The Trotters were behind inside six
minutes as Scott Sinclair found the top corner but it took them only
eight minutes to equalise through Chris Eagles.

Eagles flair: Chris Eagles puts Bolton level

Eagles flair: Chris Eagles puts Bolton level

Match facts

BOLTON: Bogdan, Steinsson, Ream, Wheater, Ricketts, Eagles, Davies, Miyaichi (Ngog 65), Reo-Coker, Petrov, Davies (Klasnic 79). Unused subs: Jaaskelainen, Alonso, Knight, Ngog, Sordell, Vela.

Goals: Eagles 14.

Booked: Steinsson, Davies.

SWANSEA: Vorm, Rangel, Caulker, Williams, Taylor, Sigurdsson, Britton, Allen, Dyer (Moore 29), Graham (Lita 79), Sinclair. Unused subs: Tremmel, Routledge, Monk, McEachran, Bessone.

Goals: Sinclair 6.

Booked: Williams

Referee: Phil Dowd

Swansea laid siege to the Bolton goal in the second half, with Danny Graham squandering a glorious chance by shooting tamely at Adam Bogdan before powering an effort against the bar, while Eagles shot just wide with a late chance for the hosts.

Blackburn's victory over Norwich on Saturday dropped Bolton to 19th but they still have games in hand over their rivals and this draw saw them close to within one point of QPR in 17th.

There was no doubt Bolton needed the points more but the visitors settled quickly and took the lead in the sixth minute with a goal of real quality from Sinclair.

The winger collected the ball on the left and took advantage of Gretar Steinsson standing off him to run along the edge of the box and curl a superb shot into the top corner. Bolton sought a quick response and they got it when, in the 14th minute, Martin Petrov broke away down the left and pulled the ball back for the onrushing Eagles to tuck away.

Leveller: Eagles (right) struck just before the quarter-hour mark

Leveller: Eagles (right) struck just before the quarter-hour mark

The hosts had not learned their
lesson from the opener, though, and were still giving Swansea too much
time and space around the area.

They almost paid the price when a
deflected cross fell to dangerman Gylfi Sigurdsson on the penalty spot
but Steinsson did brilliantly to block the shot.

Swansea were forced into an early
change when Luke Moore replaced Nathan Dyer in the 29th minute, while
Ashley Williams became the first man in referee Phil Dowd's notebook for
a foul on Kevin Davies 20 yards out.

On the slide: Kevin Davies challenges Swansea's Leon Britton (left)

On the slide: Kevin Davies challenges Swansea's Leon Britton (left)

It was a great position and Petrov's shot looked to be heading for the bottom corner until Michel Vorm stuck out a hand.

Sigurdsson was then given an
opportunity for one of his long-range specials when he was pulled back
by Mark Davies 25 yards out.

Bogdan could only parry the free-kick and he was fortunate the ball fell to defender Steven Caulker, who miscued his shot.

Frustrating: Bolton manager Owen Coyle saw his side miss a chance to help their cause

Frustrating: Bolton manager Owen Coyle saw his side miss a chance to help their cause

Swansea certainly looked the more
likely scorers and Bogdan was again let off the hook when he came for a
42nd-minute corner and got nowhere near it, with Williams flicking his
header well wide.

Swansea were again quickly out of the
blocks at the start of the second half and only some last-ditch
scrambling from the Bolton defence prevented Williams from squeezing
home Sigurdsson's corner.

A lovely through ball from Joe Allen
then played in Graham but he poked his shot rather tamely at Bogdan
when he really should have scored.

Arms race: Swansea's Gylfi Sigurdsson grabs Nigel Reo-Coker

Arms race: Swansea's Gylfi Sigurdsson grabs Nigel Reo-Coker

Bolton were hanging on, with
Swansea's latest chance seeing Graham pop up on the left and curl a shot
just wide of Bogdan's far post.

Coyle sent on David Ngog for Ryo
Miyaichi, who had struggled to get into the game, but the onslaught
continued and Sinclair would surely have tapped in Graham's cross-shot
but for a timely intervention from Steinsson.

Graham, Sinclair and Sigurdsson had
run rings around Bolton and they combined again in the 73rd minute, with
Sigurdsson playing in Graham for a shot that Bogdan could only parry.

On e chase: Ryo Miyaichi of Bolton tries to go past Neil Taylor

On e chase: Ryo Miyaichi of Bolton tries to go past Neil Taylor

Sinclair tried three times to turn
the ball in but was denied by a combination of Tim Ream and Steinsson,
while moments later Graham thundered a shot against the bar.

Having survived the siege, Bolton
began to put some pressure on the Swansea goal in the final 10 minutes
and Eagles came within a whisker of finding the net when his shot from
the edge of the box flew just wide with Vorm beaten.

Ouch: Miyaichi grimaces after a stiff challenge

Ouch: Miyaichi grimaces after a stiff challenge

Point made: Eagles knows the score... but it is two points lost for Wanderers

Point made: Eagles knows the score… but it is two points lost for Wanderers

Swansea still looked dangerous and
Moore curled a shot just over, but it was not to be for Rodgers' side,
while Bolton's last act was to give a Premier League debut to
18-year-old Josh Vela in place of the hobbling Mark Davies.

Owen foiled: Wanderers boss Coyle looks dejected

Owen foiled: Wanderers boss Coyle looks dejected

Wolves 2 Bolton 3: Crucial win for Owen Coyle

Wolves 2 Bolton 3: Crucial win for Coyle's boys will keep Muamba smiling

|

UPDATED:

16:28 GMT, 31 March 2012

Bolton came from behind to claim a vital victory at Molineux and leave rock-bottom Wolves seemingly staring relegation in the face.

After dominating the first half without managing to convert, the hosts deservedly broke the deadlock in the 53rd minute through the lively Michael Kightly, but they subsequently imploded.

Martin Petrov's penalty and further goals from Marcos Alonso and Kevin Davies saw them fall 3-1 behind, with Matt Jarvis' 88th-minute response proving a mere consolation.

Euphoria: Marcos Alonso celebrates after scoring with a horde of delighted Bolton fans

Euphoria: Marcos Alonso celebrates after scoring with a horde of delighted Bolton fans

MATCH FACTS

Wolves: Hennessey, Stearman, Johnson, Bassong, Ward, Kightly, Davis (Henry 87), Edwards (Milijas 87), Jarvis, Ebanks-Blake (Doyle 81), Fletcher

Subs Not Used: De Vries, Hunt, Berra, Zubar

Booked: Stearman

Goals: Kightly 53, Jarvis 88

Bolton: Bogdan, Ricketts, Ream, Wheater, Alonso, Miyaichi (Eagles 77), M Davies, Reo-Coker, Petrov, Klasnic (K Davies 70), Ngog (Knight 90)

Subs Not Used: Jaaskelainen, Boyata, Sordell, Vela

Booked: Klasnic

Goals: Petrov 63 pen, Alonso 80, K Davies 84

Attendance: 25,215

Referee: Jon Moss (W Yorkshire)

The result – Bolton's third win on the bounce against fellow strugglers after their league triumphs over QPR and Blackburn – means the Trotters move up a place to 16th in the Barclays Premier League, a point clear of the drop zone.

The picture is more bleak for Wolves, who are now six points adrift of safety at the foot of the table and have taken only one point from a possible 18 under manager Terry Connor, suffering five losses in a row.

The midlands outfit's remaining home matches are against Arsenal, Manchester City and Everton and Connor's predecessor Mick McCarthy had described this contest as a “must-win” game.

Win they did not – although for long periods it seemed as if this was destined to be Connor's first victory.

Wolves made a positive start, with Kightly looking a threat down the right flank and a couple of corners causing panic in the Bolton box.

Kightly then lofted a free-kick forward which Steven Fletcher did well to keep in and the ball came to Sylvan Ebanks-Blake, who brought a save out of Adam Bogdan with a snap-shot.

The Trotters served a warning at the other end, Petrov seeing an effort blocked by Richard Stearman and miscuing an attempted volley moments later, but the hosts were soon back on the offensive as Fletcher headed Jarvis' corner wide before Ebanks-Blake drilled off target from distance.

Cool: Martin Petrov strokes home the equaliser from the spot

Cool: Martin Petrov strokes home the equaliser from the spot

Opener: Michael Kightly broke the deadlock

Opener: Michael Kightly broke the deadlock

Bolton forward David Ngog sent a shot harmlessly wide just prior to the half hour mark and there was a nervier moment for Wolves soon after as Petrov just cleared the crossbar having cleverly flicked the ball over Roger Johnson.

Bogdan then did brilliantly to claw away Fletcher's header, but the hosts were looking vulnerable at the back and after Trotters striker Ivan Klasnic was allowed to get a shot away, Wolves skipper Johnson and goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey squared up to each other.

Referee Jon Moss did his best to calm the pair down and within moments, Fletcher had come close to scoring again, the Scotland international's header being cleared off the line by Ryo Miyaichi.

Muamba

Solidarity: Martin Petrov gives Stiliyan Petrov a goodwill message

Support: Bolton fans have a message for Fabrice Muamba, while Petrov has his own for Villa's Stiliyan Petrov

Spot of bother: Tempers flare after Bolton are awarded their penalty

Spot of bother: Tempers flare after Bolton are awarded their penalty

Fletcher then had another near miss just before the interval as he nodded Kightly's cross against the bar.

Wolves looked to pick up where they left off as the second half got under way and Johnson produced a header which was easily caught by Bogdan, but they then survived a scare as David Wheater glanced Miyaichi's cross just the wrong side of the post.

The hosts' dominance finally paid off eight minutes after the restart as Kightly received the ball from Ebanks-Blake, darted past Alonso and arrowed a shot beyond Bogdan into the corner of the net.

The home supporters breathed a sigh of relief, but within 10 minutes, Bolton had equalised as ex-Wolves man Mark Davies went down after being challenged by Johnson in the box and Petrov buried the resulting spot-kick.

Strike: Kightly's goal gave Wolves the head-start in a relegation six-pointer

Strike: Kightly's goal gave Wolves the head-start in a relegation six-pointer

Disagreement: Wayne Hennessey and Roger Johnson get fiesty

Disagreement: Wayne Hennessey and Roger Johnson get fiesty

As part of his celebration, the Bulgarian revealed a t-shirt displaying a message of support for his compatriot and namesake Stiliyan, the Aston Villa captain who has been diagnosed with acute leukaemia.

The Trotters wide man then almost added another, unleashing a stinging drive that Hennessey managed to save, and struck a free-kick at the goalkeeper moments later.

With just under 15 minutes to go, Jarvis blew a chance to put his side back in front by heading wide when he should have done better, and it proved costly.

Advice: Owen Coyle dispenses some instructions

Advice: Owen Coyle dispenses some instructions

Three minutes later Ngog headed Petrov's cross against the bar and Alonso had little trouble converting from close range.

Bolton then swiftly extended their
lead as one substitute Chris Eagles had the space to find Kevin Davies
who slotted past Hennessey.

Jarvis gave Wolves hope by pulling one back two minutes from time but it was too little too late.