Ipswich Town 0-0 Bolton Wanderers - Half-Time
Saturday, 22nd Sep 2018 16:05
Town’s game against Bolton remains 0-0 at the break but with the visitors having been reduced to 10 men following Marc Wilson’s red card.
Toto Nsiala returned to the Town starting line-up following the completion of his three-game suspension for his red card at Sheffield Wednesday.
The former Shrewsbury man is started at the centre of the defence alongside skipper Luke Chambers with Matthew Pennington moving to right-back with Janoi Donacien dropping out.
The St Lucian was again the loanee to miss out on a place in the matchday squad - only five are permitted in the 18 - with former Jon Walters fit enough to take a place on the bench after his achilles injury.
Bolton made four changes to the team which lost 2-0 at Middlesbrough in midweek with Mark Beevers, David Wheater, Gary O'Neil and Josh Vela dropping out of the starting line-up in favour of Wilson, Erhun Oztumer, Will Buckley and Craig Noone.
Jason Lowe scraped a weak shot wide for Bolton after five minutes following a long throw in an opening 20 minutes of little penalty area action. Town had most of the ball but without creating an opportunity.
On 21 Wilson scuffed a volley wide at the far post from a Oztumer cross after a corner, but Town were in control of the game even if they’d not been able to test Bolton skipper and keeper Ben Alnwick.
In the 29th minute Grant Ward was bundled over by Craig Noone just outside the area on the left and Gwion Edwards, who had already sent in a couple of potentially dangerous crosses from the right, hit a powerfully-struck freekick into Alnwick’s midriff.
The visitors were reduced to 10 men in the 34th minute when Wilson was shown a straight red card for denying Kayden Jackson an obvious goalscoring opportunity.
Ward did superbly on the left to bring the ball out of a tight area following a Bolton attack, then sent Jackson away with a superb pass. The pacy former Accrington man burst away beyond Wilson, who dragged him back as he broke towards the area with only Alnwick to beat.
Referee Stephen Martin immediately awarded a freekick - with Town making few protests that it was a penalty - then showed Wilson his red card to little complaint from the Trotters players.
As Ward prepared to take the freekick, which was deflected wide off the wall, Bolton boss Phil Parkinson swapped Oztumer for Wheater.
A minute before the break, Trevoh Chalobah was booked for a foul on Will Buckley with Town subsequently making heavy weather of clearing the danger from the freekick and subsequent corner.
Town had continued to enjoy a great deal of possession and had passed the ball around confidently, although largely in unthreatening areas but still without testing Alnwick.
Seconds before the whistle, Ward ended a long spell of Town passing by scraping a shot well wide.
It had been a first half of few incidents aside from Wilson’s red card, which looked the correct decision, the Ireland international had been caught out by Jackson’s blistering pace.
Neither keeper, however, had been forced to make a save in the entire 45 minutes in which Bolton perhaps had the better of the chances - or perhaps more accurately half-chances - with the Blues backline not always defending with confidence.
Given their man advantage, the Blues will hope to finally end their long wait for their first win under Paul Hurst in the second half.
Town: Gerken, Pennington, Nsiala, Chambers (c), Knudsen, Skuse, Chalobah, Edwards, Ward, Nolan, Jackson. Subs: Bialkowski, Harrison, Spence, Graham, Downes, Edun, Walters.
Bolton: Alnwick (c), Olkowski, Hobbs, Wilson, Grounds, Williams, Lowe, Buckley, Noone, Oztumer (Wheater 36), Magennis. Subs: Matthews, Vela, Donaldson, Doidge, O’Neil, Wildschut, Wheater. Referee: Stephen Martin (Staffordshire). Att: 14,755.
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