Tuesday night’s second half re-enactment of the Alamo against Carlisle United got us back on track after the hiccup at Grimsby Town last weekend. This meant more sleepless nights and stomach butterflies ahead of this six-point showdown with the Shrimps in the battle for automatic promotion. Bolton has been buzzing all week as flags and scarves appeared on houses all round the town and through the positive side of social media, fans arranged to give the team a good send off from the Unibol and a fantastic welcome at the Mazuma stadium, a.k.a. the Globe Arena. The nerves were jingling ahead of this Cup Final for sure, as we settled down to watch on iFollow in beer gardens, homes or whatever sanctuary we could find.
Ian Evatt brought in Ben Jackson to replace the injured Declan John but the battered and bruised Matt Gilks made it between the sticks and the news that Captain Antoni Sarcevic had made the bench gave us a massive boost, similar to Darren Pratley’s inspirational return against Fleetwood in March 2017.
The match started at a cracking pace with Morecambe going for it like men possessed and Bolton trying to calm things down and play controlled football. Our hopes got a massive boost when Kelvin Mellor was deservedly red carded for kicking out at Dapo Afolayan under the referee’s nose, halfway through the first half. After that the Wanderers were in total control and got the vital goal from young Ben Jackson, who could have had a hat trick. Captain Sarcevic came on midway through the second half to steer us home. In the very last minute, there was a heart stopping scramble in the Bolton box, which had us diving for cover behind our screens but thankfully Matt Gilks and Alex ‘Maldini’ Baptiste came to the rescue once again. The referee blew his whistle and we had got the result we needed.
We are nearly there. We have retained our four-point lead over Morecambe and Tranmere with two matches to go. We have confirmed our place in the Play-offs at the very least and we need to win one of our remaining matches to secure automatic promotion. I suspect that there will not be much sleep again this week but come on all Bolton fans everywhere, get those flags and scarves out this week to show the Wanderers that we are right behind them.