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Saturday, 2 March, 2002, 18:23 GMT
Blackburn deny Bolton
Andy Cole gets his marching orders from referee Paul Durkin in Blackburn's match at Bolton
Cole was sent off for violent conduct after 19 minutes
Bolton 1-1 Blackburn
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Ten-man Blackburn Rovers battled back well at The Reebok to eke out a point against fellow strugglers Bolton.

Matt Jansen's stunning strike in the 68th minute cancelled out Rod Wallace's opener in the first half.

It was a determined performance from Blackburn, who were without Andy Cole for more than three-quarters of the match.

The match-winning hero in the Worthington Cup final last weekend became the villain of the piece at the Reebok Stadium, as he was sent off for retaliation after just 19 minutes.

  Key moments
19 mins: Cole sent off
45 mins: Wallace puts Bolton ahead
68 mins: Jansen equalises for Blackburn

Blackburn clung on determinedly for the rest of the half until a mistake by Cole's former Manchester United team-mate Henning Berg allowed Wallace to break the deadlock.

But after resisting Bolton pressure early in the second half, Jansen struck to level matters.

And from then on, it was Graeme Souness' men who looked more likely winners.

Frantic pace

Both teams' desperation for points combined with the passion and tension evoked by a local derby meant the match was a fast-paced but scrappy affair.

Tempers frequently threatened to boil over and flowing moves were few and far between.


Andy Cole deserved to be sent off but the play acting was the worst aspect of it
Blackburn Rovers manager Graeme Souness
Cole came closest to opening the scoring in the early stages when he just failed to get on the end of a long punt upfield.

Seconds later his participation in the match came to an end when he was sent off.

The England striker was scythed down by Mike Whitlow and reacted by appearing to stamp on the Bolton player.

Matt Jansen celebrates his equaliser
Matt Jansen was the hero for Blackburn
Blackburn had to regroup but seemed to have reached the safety of half-time.

However, Henning Berg's underweighted back pass on the stroke of half-time allowed Wallace to nip in and coolly slot past Brad Freidel.

Bolton had a couple of chances to cushion their lead at the start of the second half.

Nicky Southall intercepted after an error by Nils-Eric Johansson and crossed into the box only for Wallace to balloon the ball over the bar.

Then Friedel pulled off a superb save from Kevin Nolan and then denied Wallace on the rebound.

Blackburn began to work their way into the game, with debutant Hakan Unsal's fierce left-foot drive forcing Jaaskelainen to tip the ball away.


If you retaliate, it is a sending off - there is no doubt it was a fault from Mike but I suppose that's the emotions of a derby
Bolton manager Sam Allardyce
Then Jansen, who had worked tirelessly since the departure of Cole, equalised with a lovely left-foot volley on the turn just inside the Bolton box.

Substitute Michael Ricketts had a couple of chances to restore Bolton's lead.

He just failed to scramble the ball home after good work by Ricardo Gardner on the right, and then was somehow denied by the Blackburn defence from two yards out.

But as the match wore on, it was Blackburn who looked the more likely to snatch a winner.


Bolton: Jaaskelainen, N'Gotty, Bergsson, Whitlow, Southall (Barness 79), Tofting, Nolan, Gardner, Djorkaeff, Bobic (Ricketts 54), Wallace (Holdsworth 85).
Subs Not Used: Poole, Espartero.

Booked: Whitlow.

Blackburn: Friedel, Neill, Berg, Johansson, Bjornebye (Yordi 45), Dunn, Hughes (Gillespie 62), Flitcroft, Unsal (Duff 62), Cole, Jansen.
Subs Not Used: Miller, Taylor.

Sent Off: Cole (19)

Att: 27,203

Ref: P Durkin (Dorset).

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Sport's Ian Brown
"It was a petulant twist of the foot from Cole"
Bolton boss Sam Allardyce
"We've thrown two points away today"
Blackburn boss Graeme Souness
"Cole deserved to be sent off"
Blackburn striker Matt Jansen
"It feels like a win "
Links to more Eng Prem stories are at the foot of the page.

 

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