Quaner at the double as Town reward travelling Blue Army
Two first-half goals from Collin Quaner maintained Town’s impressive hold over Wanderers.
Blues haven’t lost to Bolton since 2002 and that record always looked likely to remain intact after the Huddersfield loanee had stuck twice inside the first 40 minutes.
Town had looked the more likely to break the deadlock before Quaner did just that on the half hour with a header and then an excellent finish just before half-time put Blues in total control.
Bolton pulled a goal back in added on time with an own goal from Josh Emmanuel but Town held out without any alarms to give the travelling 1400 fans reward for the long journey and Paul Lambert a first away win as Blues’ boss.
James Collins was one of five changes to the Town side that went down against Hull last week. Teddy Bishop also coming in, both having recovered from injury.
After a cloud that has been hanging over the University of Bolton Stadium all week, with the game put in doubt through financial reasons at Wanderers and then a major failure of the IT system at the club on Friday - the match got underway in bright sunshine with former Town loanee Callum Connolly threatening to get on the end of a cross.
A clever pass from Andre Dozzell found Alan Judge in space, his cross cleared by David Wheater, Gwion Edwards was crowded out in the box, then the Welshman challenged for Myles Kenlock’s cross at the far post but ‘keeper Remi Matthews held firm.
Another Kenlock cross was met by the on-rushing Quaner but he couldn’t take advantage, Sammy Ameobi’s flick diverted wide from a corner at the other end, then Luke Chambers ended a scramble in the Town box as the game started to come alive.
Dozzell’s corner was almost diverted into his own net by Gary O’Neil but on 33 minutes Blues were ahead, Quaner getting on the end of Chambers’ cross to bury his header into the net.
Judge tested Matthews with a vicious low drive as Town threatened a second, Bolton responding with a Josh Magennis header at Bart Bialkowski, then Judge showing a touch of class to conjure up an opening but Mark Beevers responded.
Luca Connell replaced O’Neil five minutes before the break, the substitute seeing a shot blocked, Connolly denied by a deflection but it was Town who struck again, Quaner on the turn and finding the net from the edge of the box to put Blues in control.
Will Buckley volleyed wide at the far post as Bolton looked to make an early mark in the second-half, Ameobi ending a mazy run with a shot that fell into Bialkowski’s hands, Wheater’s header across goal from a corner going wide.
Flynn Downes replaced Bishop on the hour, Judge inches away from a third goal for Town after Quaner had crossed from the right, Erhun Oztumer on for Andrew Taylor in Bolton’s second change.
Chambers cleared as Magennis waited to pounce, the Town skipper throwing himself in the way of a shot, then Bialkowski holding on from Oztumer’s 20 yarder.
Trevoh Chalobah replaced Dozzell for the final stages, Craig Noone on for Buckley. Kayden Jackson for Edwards was the final change, the substitute’s pace almost bringing an instant reward.
Town continued to hold firm at the back with Collins and Chambers shutting out the danger at every turn, with Bialkowksi rarely tested over the 90 minutes until Bolton struck in added on time with a consolation.
Bolton: Matthews, Taylor (Oztumer 64), Beevers, Ameobi, Buckley (Noone 75), Olkowski, Connolly, O’Neil (Connell 40), Williams, Magennis, Wheater. Subs not used: Alnwick, Little, Donaldson, Wilson.
Town: Bialkowski, Emmanuel, Chambers, Collins, Kenlock, Bishop (Downes 61), Skuse, Edwards (Jackson 80), Dozzell (Chalobah 74), Judge, Quaner. Subs not used: Gerken, El Mizouni, Bree, Nsiala.