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John Aldridge
"Taking a First Division side to a prestigious final is the best"
 real 28k

Tranmere captain David Kelly
"I'll be proud to lead the lads out - if selected"
 real 28k

The BBC's Mike Ingham
"Dave Challinor terrorised Bolton with his long throws"
 real 28k

The BBC's Alan Green
"The Premiership sides should take nothing for granted"
 real 28k

Thursday, 27 January, 2000, 09:24 GMT
Tranmere book Wembley place

henry Tranmere's Nick Henry celebrates his opening goal


Tranmere 3-0 Bolton
(4-0 on aggregate)


Tranmere are through to the Worthington Cup final after an emphatic 3-0 victory over Bolton.

Leading 1-0 from the first leg, the tie was all but over inside 20 minutes as Nick Henry and Alan Mahon struck quickly.



I wanted us to win the game and win it well and that's exactly what happened.
Tranmere manager John Aldridge
Bolton had no answer to wave after wave of Tranmere attacks and Rovers keeper John Achterberg was rarely tested.

Wanderers were left playing for pride in the second half but even their bid to keep the scoreline respectable failed as David Kelly fired home on 70 minutes.

After the match, Tranmere boss, John Aldridge, admitted he was delighted with the result.


taylor Scott Taylor: Added Tranmere's second
"As a player I was lucky to win a lot of trophies but to get Tranmere to a major final makes me a very happy man.

"Everything went to plan and we knew we couldn't sit back after the first leg."

The result secures Tranmere's place in their first major final at Wembley.

The last time they visited the stadium was 1991, when, ironically, they defeated Bolton in the old Division Three play-off final.

Bolton lack fight

Bolton quite simply, were abysmal, caving in as Rovers went for the jugular from the first whistle.



Tranmere were magnificent on the night, and quite simply we couldn't cope.
Bolton boss Sam Allardyce
Indeed, Bolton's hopes of keeping a clean sheet were dashed as early as the sixth minute when they failed to clear a Dave Challinor long throw and Henry volleyed into the top corner from the edge of the box.

Mahon struck the bar from 35 yards with Steve Banks beaten before Tranmere doubled their lead.

Mike Whitlow was outwitted by Scott Taylor and when the striker was bundled over, referee Graham Poll had no option but to award the penalty.


tay Taylor is tackled by Bolton's Robbie Elliott
Republic of Ireland Under-21 midfielder Mahon, 21, kept his cool despite the immense pressure as he sent Banks the wrong way from the spot.

It broke Bolton's spirit and the absence of five senior players in the Tranmere side was not noticed.

At centre-back, Challinor and Phil Babb - playing just the second match of his loan spell from Liverpool - were magnificent, and Eidur Gudjohnsen and Dean Holdsworth were completely outplayed.

Tranmere never stopped working and closing down their visitors, and it was apt that captain Kelly should score the third.

The much-travelled striker ran himself into the ground but he had enough energy left to beat Banks via the base of a post after finding himself in plenty of space 18 yards out.

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