CITY 0 BOLTON WANDERERS 2
FA Barclays Premiership
23rd December 2006
Scorers Anelka(8 & 25)
City Weaver, Distin, Dunne, Onuoha, Thatcher, Ireland, Barton, Trabelsi, Vassell, Miller, Dickov – Subs Samaras(56), Jordan(unused), Isaksson(unused), Dabo(56), Beasley(unused)
Bolton Jaaskelainen, Hunt, Meite, Ben Haim, Pedersen, Nolan, Campo, Faye, Speed, Anelka, Diouf – subs Gardner(87), Vaz Te(72), Walker(unused), Andranik(unused), Tal(unused)
NICOLAS ANELKA must wish he could play against one of his former clubs every week. The France striker has so far failed to shine as brightly for Bolton Wanderers as he once did with Arsenal, and to a lesser extent Manchester City. But it is against these two clubs that the surly Parisian has conjured his two most devastating goalscoring performances of the season.
Against Airsenal, it was his brace that propelled Wanderers to victory and against 10 man City, he once again reminded old supporters of his enigmatic ability.
And it was a point Sam Allardyce was keen to make about the striker who scored 43 goals in 103 appearances for the Blues.
He said “I just wished he had played for the other 19 Premiership clubs before he joined us because he got two against Arsenal and two today to show these clubs what they have been missing. “We have provided the service for Nicolas and there is no one better than him at them.”
… City’s Joey Barton again imploded as he was dismissed in the 86th minute for a reckless two footed lunge at Abdoulaye Faye.
… Anelka opened the scoring with a clinical near-post finish after a move involving Kevin Nolan and Nicky Hunt with the latter supplying the ball he lethally dispatched past Nicky Weaver after eight minutes.
City, though, almost punched back immediately and felt aggrieved they were not awarded ah equaliser when Paul Dickov`s header from Hatem Trabelsi’s cross appeared to have crossed the iine despite Jussi Jaaskelainen’s attempts to keep it out. Stuart Pearce was clear in his belief that his side should have been awarded a goal, The City boss said; “It was a foot over. Maybe he has be hit the back of the net next time but we have no one to blame but ourselves.
Anelka’s second was the result of a well crafted Bolton counter attack that started with Tal Ben Haim releasing Henrik Pedersen` The Danes powerful surge up the left flank ended with a clever square ball to Anelka who had somehow ghosted into the back post to coolly slot home.
SORIEBAH KAJUE WRITING FOR THE SUNDAY MIRROR