Eagles brings shambolic Liverpool down to earth

Bolton Wanderers 3 Liverpool 1: Winger plays influential role as Dalglish hits out at Liverpool flops

The Reebok Stadium

Loyalty is Kenny Dalglish's overriding emotion and yet after the worst performance since he returned to manage Liverpool, he turned on his team, accusing them of a lack of respect for both their opponents and the history of their own club.

Dalglish said his players appeared far more focused on their two upcoming matches that pitch them against Manchester City for a place in the Carling Cup final and United in the FA Cup rather than a run-of-the-mill fixture against a team they had beaten consistently.

"The most disappointing thing was I don't think we were ready to play the game," he said. "The approach was not correct, the way we went about our work was not correct. The foundations of this football club have always been based on respect for our opponents.

"The philosophy has always been that the next game is the most important one, not one that's two or three down the line. If they thought they were just going to have to turn up, they needed a lesson to be taught to them and today was it. They thought they didn't need to match the opposition for effort and commitment. It is not the right way to represent this football club.

"If they thought this game was not as important as the next ones they will not be here next season."

For season after season Bolton have been Liverpool's patsies. They went into this game having lost the last 10 of these fixtures and responded like a schoolboy turning on the playground bully.

Bolton emerged into the sunlight after four months in the Premier League's relegation zone, having delivered the kind of result and performance that turns seasons.

The collapse began after four minutes and like much of Bolton's play, it was supremely well worked, beginning with Chris Eagles on the right flank who found David Ngog, who with one flick sent Mark Davies running between Martin Skrtel and Daniel Agger to finish the move perfectly. Eagles is showing the kind of form he suggested he was capable of when on Manchester United's books.

On the edge of the Liverpool area, he appeared to have far more time than he knew what to do with. He chose a little dink into the area that Nigel Reo-Coker anticipated before any of his potential markers.

Defensively, Liverpool had been a shambles and had Pepe Reina not diverted Martin Petrov's free-kick at full stretch with virtually the final kick before the interval, they would have conceded a third, although this was only delayed for a matter of minutes.

There was some sporadic resistance, which included a penalty appeal for handball against Zat Knight and a shot from Daniel Agger that skimmed the bar. However, it was Craig Bellamy who displayed the kind of grit Liverpool had entirely lacked, although it spilled over when he confronted Reo-Coker in the first half, to reignite a spat that long predates this fixture. The Bolton captain afterwards said he had "no respect" for the Liverpool striker, who at West Ham had compared him unfavourably to Kieron Dyer.

Nevertheless, he scored. Andy Carroll, who had been taunted by chants of: "You're just a shit Kevin Davies" headed on into the Welshman's path. Bellamy has a reputation for not being particularly strong when one on one with the keeper and Adam Bodgan half saved his shot before looking up to see it roll overthe line.

It was, however, only a temporary reprieve. Five minutes after the restart, David Wheater rose to meet a deep corner from Petrov and Gretar Steinsson, sweeping in, drove home an astonishing third. Had Roy Hodgson been managing Liverpool he would have been howled down; instead for the man on the touchline there was only stunned silence.

Bolton Wanderers: (4-5-1) Bogdan; Steinsson, Wheater, Ricketts; Eagles (Tuncay, 90), Muamba, Davies, Reo-Coker, Petrov; Ngog (K Davies, 88).

Liverpool: (4-2-3-1) Reina; Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Enrique; Adam (Downing, 64), Henderson; Bellamy, Gerrard, Rodriguez (Kuyt, 64); Carroll.

Referee: Kevin Friend

Man of the match: Eagles (Bolton)

Match rating: 8/10

Voices
On the last day of campaigning before the polling booths open, the SNP leader has written to voters in a final attempt to convince them to vote for independence
voicesIs a huge gamble on oil keeping the First Minister up at night?
Life and Style
tech

Apple has been hit by complaints about the 1.1GB download

Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't
tv

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

Sport
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo
football

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear
tv

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style
life

Life and Style
fashion

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

Life and Style
Alexander McQueen A/W 2014
fashionPolitics aside, tartan is on-trend again this season
Arts and Entertainment
Rapper Jay Z performs on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury in 2008
musicSinger sued over use of the single-syllable sample in 'Run This Town'
Sport
Joel jumps over the board...and into a giant hole
footballFrom joy to despair in a matter of seconds
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Pointless host Alexander Armstrong will voice Danger Mouse on CBBC
tv

Much-loved cartoon character returns - without Sir David Jason

Arts and Entertainment
Meera Syal was a member of the team that created Goodness Gracious Me
tv

Actress to appear in second series of the hugely popular crime drama

Arts and Entertainment
The former Doctor Who actor is to play a vicar is search of a wife
film

Matt Smith is set to join cast of the Jane Austen classic - with a twist

Life and Style
i100

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week