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Crystal Palace 0-0 Bolton: Report
Published : 19 Jan 2013 17:31:21
Crystal Palace 0-0 Bolton: Match Report - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game as it happened.
Stalemate for Freedman on Eagles return
Dougie Freedman's return to Crystal Palace ended in stalemate as his new side Bolton cancelled out his old one in a goalless draw.
Freedman, an Eagles legend after two playing spells at Selhurst, upset the locals when he left to take over Wanderers in October, but his reception was nothing like as frosty as the conditions.
And it was his former team who came closest to grabbing a winner when in-demand winger Wilfried Zaha rattled a post.
Zaha was almost unplayable in the second half, again showing the talent which has got Manchester United and Arsenal vying for his signature.
However he was well marshalled in the first half so it was left to Bolton's Chris Eagles, whose surname surely warrants a move to Palace at some point in his career, to liven up proceedings.
The midfielder almost struck just after the kick-off with a 25-yard drive which had Palace keeper Julian Speroni scrambling as it flew narrowly wide.
Eagles then tried a curler into the opposite corner which Speroni got down well to palm away.
In between time, the former Manchester United youngster also managed to get booked for diving following an extravagant tumble on the edge of the Palace area.
Bolton should have gone in front after half an hour when Eagles sent Tyrone Mears scampering down the right.
Darren Pratley dived in to meet Mears' inviting cross six yards out but made a mess of his header and the ball drifted wide.
Palace were claiming a penalty whe the ball hit Mears' arm in the area but referee Robert Madley was unmoved, and in the aftermath Eagles took exception to a trip from Dean Moxey and was fortunate the official did not reach for a second yellow card.
Palace thought they had taken the lead just before half-time when Adam Bogdan saved Yannick Bolasie's shot and Glenn Murray tucked in the rebound, but the striker was flagged offside.
In the second half Zaha, by now finding the space he was not afforded in the first, came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock when his angled drive came back off the post.
The ball fell to substitute Andre Moritz who, from an even tighter angle, fired the rebound across goal and wide.
Another jinking run and cross from Zaha should have produced the winner from Murray, but the Championship's top scorer uncharacteristically scooped his shot too high.
And in stoppage time Bogdan's point-blank save from Murray ensured Freedman would take a point back up to Lancashire.