Bolton 2 Birmingham 2: Trotters fight back for draw despite Jussi Jaaskelainen's red card

29 August 2010 07:20
Jussi Jaaskelainen's only consolation for an act of rash stupidity was that Bolton coped better without their Finnish goalkeeper in a surprisingly entertaining clash at the Reebok Stadium yesterday.

Jaaskelainen responded to a clumsy aerial challenge from Roger Johnson before half-time by first kicking out at the Birmingham defender on the ground and then angrily slapping him around the side of the head.

Off you go: Jussi Jaaskelainen was sent off for slapping Roger Johnson

Referee Kevin Friend had no optionbut to show the him the fourth red card of his 13-year Bolton career,and there were few complaints from manager Owen Coyle.

'It was a clear sending-off, there'sno doubt about it,' said Coyle. 'Jussi was fouled but he's made amistake and he's bitterly disappointed. I'm not going to make excusesfor him, he's a grown man and he was beside himself at the end of thegame.'

The incident brought younggoalkeeper Adam Bogdan off the bench just five days after his seniordebut, and means the flame-haired Hungarian will be in goal forBolton's next three games - starting with a trip to Arsenal - followingCoyle's decision to let Ali Al Habsi join Wigan on loan.

Enlarge Stunner: Summer signing Robbie Blake's free-kick brought the two sides level

Bodgan, 22, justified his manager'sfaith with a crucial late block from Cameron Jerome to preserve a drawthat leaves both teams unbeaten.

Johnson had ventured forward oncewith great effect after less than four minutes, stabbing pastJaaskelainen from closerange, and Birmingham struck again five minutesafter half-time when Jerome was just onside to nod down JamesMcFadden's cross for Craig Gardner to score at the second attempt.

Flashpoint: Jaaskelainen slaps Johnson and is then handed his marching orders

Bolton looked better with 10 menthan 11, even though visiting manager Alex McLeish claimed, with somejustification, that the hosts were helped by a few generous decisionsfrom Friend.

The referee pointed to the spot whenJohnson capped an eventful afternoon by climbing on the back of KevinDavies, who picked himself up to score from the spot.

We've done it! Blake heads to the Bolton fans after scoring a dramatic equaliser

And when Barry Ferguson was adjudgedto have fouled Gary Cahill nine minutes from time - even though theBolton centre half appeared to collide with team-mate Mark Davies -former Birmingham striker Robbie Blake claimed his first goal for hisnew club with a wonderful free-kick.

'Hopefully the referee will watch the game again and explain why he gave the penalty and the free-kick,' said McLeish.

'The penalty was extremely soft andthe free-kick should have been given the other way because Barry wassandwiched by their men. 'It feels like a defeat.'

 Premier League live: Follow the action from Sunday's gamesBolton midfielder Davis set to be out of action for two monthsBirmingham's protracted move for Wigan winger N'Zogbia collapsesBOLTON WANDERERS FC

Source: Daily_Mail

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