Bolton land first win as pressure builds for Souey

Last updated : 25 August 2005 By Chris Rabbitt
BOLTON WANDERERS have risen to 8th in the Premiership following a hard-earned, overdue first victory of the season over Newcastle United at the Reebok Stadium.

Goals either side of half-time from El-Hadji Diouf and Stelios Giannakopolous were enough to see off Graeme Souness's men and had the Newcastle boss feeling the heat after picking up just one point from nine so far this campaign.

It was the visitors that began the game the brighter, Shola Ameobi's header being cleared off the line by former team-mate Gary Speed. For most of the match however Bolton seemed to be in control.

The first chance for the home side came after around quarter of an hour, Jay-Jay Okocha bringing groans from the crowd after sending his free-kick high and wide.

But Bolton's pressure would eventually pay, and sure enough with little less than ten minutes to go in the half, an inch-perfect cross from Nicky Hunt was met with a typical bullet header from Diouf, leaving Given stranded.

Wanderers saw out the half, and went into the interval with a comfortable 1-0 advantage, and Newcastle without a goal yet this season feared the worst. But the worst was yet to come.

Early in the second half Diouf turned from scorer to provider as he picked up an overhit ball from Nicky Hunt, pinged it back in the penalty area where the faintest of headers from Gary Speed left Stelios to poke it home at the far post. 2-0 to Bolton, and with Newcastle running out of ideas up front, the result was never in doubt from here on in.

El-Hadji Diouf threatened to increase Bolton's lead to three, heading a corner just an inch wide of Shay Given's post.

Souness' men did manage a few efforts at goal in the final half hour, most notably Alan Shearer bringing out an excellent stop from Jussi Jaaskelainen with a long-range drive.

By the end however, with chants of "Taxi for Souness" ringing around the Reebok Stadium, Newcastle were a beaten team. And the Newcastle boss will not feel any happier when he realises who his shot-shy troops face next - a home duel with Manchester United.

Bolton meanwhile have finally got their season up and running, and will be heading to Upton Park on Saturday to face West Ham United full of confidence, and determined to end the Hammers' dream start to their Premiership return.

Final score at the Reebok Stadium, Bolton 2-0 Newcastle