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Saturday, 12 January, 2002, 17:39 GMT
Bolton frustrate Chelsea
Per Frandsen and Frank Lampard battle for possession at the Reebok
Per Frandsen and Frank Lamaprd battle it out
Bolton 2-2 Chelsea
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Chelsea's inconsistency surfaced again as Kevin Nolan salvaged a late point for Bolton.

Blues coach Claudio Ranieri was preparing to celebrate a master-stroke as substitute Mikael Forsell looked to have given Chelsea all three points with a 64th minute goal.

But Nolan popped up with a 78th minute equaliser to salvage a point for Bolton and leave Ranieri cursing his Jekyll and Hyde team.

Although grateful for the point, Bolton are still looking for their first home win since beating Liverpool on August 27.

All the goals came in the second period, following a dull first-half when chances were at a premium.

The first opening came on 18 minutes when Jaaskelainen flapped at a cross under pressure from former Bolton hero Eidur Gudjohnsen, but recovered to save Lampard's shot as the ball ran loose.

First half, not very good - second half, very brilliant
Chelsea coach Claudio Ranieri

Gudjohnsen then sliced a volley wide after Zola's cute chip picked him out.

Bolton had the best chances of the first-half when Charlton's pass found Nolan unmarked in front of goal. He opted for accuracy instead of power, allowing Cudicini to block.

Then N'Gotty stole in at the near post on to Per Frandsen's free-kick, only for his downward header to deflect wide off Mario Stanic's knee.

The action perked up in the second-half, although Bolton's finishing initially didn't.

Henrik Pedersen ran clear of the Chelsea defence, only to slice wildly wide with only Cudicini to beat.

A minute later, he was made to pay for that miss by Gudjohnsen, who started and finished the move.

Mikael Forsell thought he had given Cheslea all three points
Forsell thought he had given Chelsea all three points

He spread play to Stanic on the right, and as N'Gotty failed to cut out the cross, took advantage to coolly slide the ball past Jaaskelainen.

But Chelsea's lead and joy was short-lived.

Just two minutes later, the ball broke kindly to Michael Ricketts who calmly rounded Cudicini to poke his 12th Premiership goal of the season into an empty net.


With Chelsea needing all three points to stay on the tails of the leading pack, Ranieri threw Forsell into the fray and got immediate dividends as he scored with his second touch.

Picking the ball up 23 yards out, Forsell's shot seemed purely speculative, but on Bolton's poor pitch, the ball took a wicked bobble over Jaaskelainen's dive.

Chelsea had a let-off when Bergsson threw himself at a corner and only made thin contact in front of goal.

These are the sort of games we are going to have to start winning
Bolton manager Sam Allardyce
But Chelsea again showed their soft underbelly as Kevin Nolan rewarded Bolton's persistence.

Nolan reacted as the ball dropped to him 16 yards out to fire in a shot which took a deflection off Marcel Desailly to take the ball beyond Cudicini's dive.

Both sides had amazing escapes in a frantic finale.

First John Terry cleared off the line from Ricketts, and at the other end the Chelsea defender was denied a last gasp winner by Simon Charlton's goal-line block.

Bolton: Jaaskelainen, Diawara, Bergsson, N'Gotty (Barness 78), Charlton, Southall, Frandsen (Gardner 72), Farrelly, Nolan, Ricketts, Pedersen (Bobic 57).

Subs Not Used: Poole, Johnson.

Chelsea: Cudicini, Melchiot, Terry, Desailly, Le Saux, Lampard, Morris (Jokanovic 76), Dalla Bona, Stanic, Zola (Forssell 65), Gudjohnsen.

Subs not used: de Goey, Ferrer, Keenan.

Booked: Stanic.

Attendance: 23,891

Referee: J Winter (Stockton-on-Tees).

BBC Sport's Peter Slater
"Bolton certainly deserved something from this game"
Bolton's Kevin Nolan
"It's difficult trying to turn these draws into wins"
Links to more Eng Prem stories are at the foot of the page.


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