Klasnic sees his golden sunset strike turn red
Bolton Wanderers 2 Stoke City 1
Sunday 17 October 2010
Just what can you make of this? Ivan Klasnic goes on as a 78th minute substitute, hits a stoppage-time winner and still has time to pick up two yellow cards and a red. Clearly his manager, Owen Coyle, had him well, er, pumped-up.
Amid the glow of securing Bolton Wanderers' first home Premier League victory of the season, the Croatian shoved a hand in the throat of Dean Whitehead following a free-kick award and then led with his left arm when challenging Rory Delap soon after.
He should have walked for the first offence and the referee, Peter Walton, made sure he did for the second, although Coyle insisted: "He just jumped early for the ball. I accept the first booking but thought the second was very harsh." Coyle also had a ready answer when asked whether his player was over-excited: "You should be excited, scoring a winner like that."
An always feisty encounter rarely hinted at such a sting in the tail, especially when Stoke City were busy underlining their reputation as the top flight's best second-half side. But Klasnic intervened dramatically, first by shooting home left-footed from eight yards after, irony of ironies, Delap and Abdoulaye Faye had failed to deal with Gretar Steinsson's long throw from the right.
Stoke deserved better. They were unfortunate to be behind at the interval, a delicious free-kick from Jermaine Pennant curling against the bar and adding to their record as the division's most frequent strikers of opponents' woodwork. Zat Knight was also fortunate to escape a penalty when he handled in the area, admittedly thanks to a hefty nudge by Robert Huth, and it seemed to sum up the visitors' day that Ricardo Fuller was led off only 10 minutes after his introduction, seemingly with a recurrence of the shoulder problem he suffered three weeks ago.
Bolton led through not much more than a toe-poke from Chung-Yong Lee following a one-two with Kevin Davies and a helpful cannon off Faye. Characteristically, Stoke's goal came from a set-piece, less typically, Delap was the beneficiary rather than the provider. He had space at the far post to direct in a close-range volley after Huth's towering leap to Pennant's right-wing corner had brought about a deflection off Paul Robinson.
"The first half was as good as we have played," said Stoke's manager Tony Pulis. "We controlled the game that much."
Bookings: Bolton: Steinsson, Klasnic. Stoke: Huth, Whitehead.
Referee: Peter Walton
Man of the match: Pennant
Latest in Sport
Paul Scholes: Manchester United vs Liverpool - I don't understand why Brendan Rodgers was not more attacking against Basel
Jesus Christ plays for Chelsea - that's what one in five children thinks
Transfer Talk: Nemanja Vidic to return to Manchester United; Hazard to leave Chelsea; Sunderland want Radamel Falcao
Frank Warren column: Don't bet on Amir Khan landing pay day against Floyd Mayweather
Manchester United transfer news: Kevin Strootman move edges closer
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food