Bolton and QPR Draw With Storm Brian
That was horrendous weather for a football match. Off the top of my head, I can only think there were two worse Bolton games in recent years in terms of the conditions. One was that windy game at Everton in 2012 when Tim Howard ended up scoring from 70 yards, before we came from behind to beat them. The other, and the one that remains the benchmark, was the Zenit game in 2005.
Storm Brian and its combination of wind and rain meant there was no easy way to play. Try and play the ball on the deck, and you were confronted, particularly later in the game, by the standing water. If the worst of the weather had arrived an hour later, we might not have finished that match. Sammy Ameobi had an average game, presumably just not able to operate as he`d like in that weather. In fact, all our strongest performances came through the middle. Play it in the air, as we do tend to do, and the accuracy of the long balls is hostage to the wind.
Amongst all that we still led for the majority of the game, while we didn`t win, scoring in back-to-back games after a drought like the one we`ve had is a sign of progress. From the corner, Gary Madine set up Darren Pratley and we went ahead.
As the afternoon progressed and conditions worsened, Bolton sat back and back, before Idrissa Sylla`s decent finish with just over 10 minutes to go levelled it for QPR. To get to that stage of the game and not hold on to the three points was disappointing.
Ian Holloway has a reputation as a bit of a clown and he proved that again in his post-match comments. Once they scored, apparently only they were going to win in and any Bolton fan would admit that. Well, we don`t think that.
We came out and tried to attack again, Adam Le Fondre was brought on as Phil Parkinson went 4-4-2, and we put some pressure on with a free kick and some corners, even if said pressure was superficial.
We`re just the five points adrift of Birmingham in 21st place now, and we`re two unbeaten, so that`s small progress, unfortunately, next is a trip to Fulham where we haven`t won in about 700 league games. That Sunderland game next Tuesday, however, is looking huge.