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Page last updated at 16:12 GMT, Saturday, 2 May 2009 17:12 UK

Wigan 0-0 Bolton

By Marc Vesty

Gary Cahill and Mido
Cahill and Mido had chances to break the deadlock

Bolton goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen made three first-half saves to help earn his side a point against Wigan.

The Finn twice denied Hugo Rodallega, the first with the aid of the post, the second a one-on-one with the Colombian.

Jaaskelainen also did well to tip Mido's sublime long-range curling effort over the bar.

Gary Cahill's deflected volley hit the woodwork, while Matt Taylor had a goal chalked off for offside, with Davies also striking the bar with a header.

Any thoughts that this would be a tame mid-table affair were dismissed early on with a couple of heavy challenges from Kevin Davies setting the tone for an entertaining north-west derby.

Three minutes in, Rodallega's low drive almost put the home side ahead.

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A clever back-heel from Mido set up the Colombian forward, whose firm strike from 18 yards out looked routine for Jaaskelainen, but the keeper changed direction mid-dive and seemed to twist his knee before managing to awkwardly tip the ball on to the post.

Jaaskelainen showed no signs that the injury would affect his record of playing every minute of every league and cup game for Bolton this season, and he continued to show his importance to Gary Megson's side.

Charles N'Zogbia tested him with a low drive which was tipped around the post before producing a second stop from Rodallega, who is yet to score for Wigan.

The Colombian found space on the edge of the six yard box and tried to slide the ball beyond Jaaskelainen, who reacted quickly to save with his legs.

Lack of firepower costs us - Bruce

Bolton almost scored an opener against the run of play when Chris Kirkland punched a cross to the edge of the 18-yard box, which Cahill thumped goalwards with a thundering volley that deflected off a Wigan defender onto the bar.

Jaaskelainen again came to Bolton's rescue when the lively Mido was gifted the ball and then given time to pick his spot from 25 yards.

The Egyptian floated in a goalbound curling effort but Jaaskelainen acrobatically tipped the ball away.

Taylor had the ball in the back of the net on the stroke of half-time for Bolton after he reacted quickest to a high ball into the Wigan box, which was flicked on by Davies.

Megson praises keeper Jaaskelainen

Taylor poked past Kirkland from close range but the referee disallowed the strike off for offside, which looked to be a close call.

Bolton looked the more likely to nick a goal as the game petered out, Davies heading against the bar late on.

But a point each should dismiss any chances of Bolton being pulled into relegation trouble and is likely to end any hopes Wigan may have had of making a late charge for a European place.


Wigan manager Steve Bruce:
"You have to take your chances and we had three excellent opportunities early on and we should have been out of sight.

"It has been our Achilles heel all season - we have not scored enough goals.

"So we have once again had to rely on our defence to keep a clean sheet."

Bolton manager Gary Megson:

"I did think that we had the best opportunity and I do think, having seen it again, Taylor was onside and it should count, but it is a difficult job for the linesman to see that in real time.

"Some of Jaaskelainen's saves were very good and that is why we wouldn't swap him for anyone else in the Premiership.

"We look at the moment like we are limping over the line but if you look around there are some who are not limping.

"While we are disappointed not to get all three points, it is a good point for us and a clean sheet away from home."


Wigan: Kirkland, Melchiot (Boyce 46), Bramble, Scharner (Edman 53), Figueroa, Valencia, Brown, Cattermole, N'Zogbia, Rodallega, Mido (Zaki 75).

Subs Not Used: Pollitt, Watson, De Ridder, Koumas.

Booked: Mido, Cattermole.

Bolton: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Andrew O'Brien, Samuel, Kevin Davies, Muamba, McCann, Cohen (Riga 79), Taylor, Elmander.

Subs Not Used: Al Habsi, Puygrenier, Hunt, Makukula, Smolarek, Basham.

Booked: McCann, Muamba, Taylor.

Att: 18,655

Ref: Mike Jones (Cheshire).


BBC Sport Player Rater man of the match: Wigan's Antonio Valencia (8.20 on 90 minutes).

Please note that you can still give the players marks out of 10 on BBC Sport's Player Rater after the match has finished.



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see also
Premier League as it happened
02 May 09 |  Premier League
Saturday's football photos
02 May 09 |  Football


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