Gerard Houllier witnessed at first hand Aston Villa's strengths and weaknesses after they failed to provide caretaker-manager Kevin MacDonald with the perfect send off with Bolton securing a 1-1 draw.
New Villa boss Houllier, with assistant Gary McAllister joining him in the directors' box after the Scot was confirmed in the role just before kick off, will believe he has plenty of talent to work with, although it only showed itself in patches.
With MacDonald taking charge of his final game, Ashley Young scored in his fifth successive match against Bolton to give Villa an early lead, only for captain Kevin Davies to net a worthy equaliser for the visitors.
Houllier officially takes up the reins on Monday, with his first match in charge a home Carling Cup tie with Blackburn just 48 hours later.
Young put them in front with a 24-yard free-kick around a wall which James Collins had superbly leaned in to create the opening.
But after a sloppy ball across his own 18-yard box by Stephen Warnock, Bolton countered, culminating in Davies curling a 20-yard right-foot shot narrowly beyond Brad Friedel's left-hand post.