Coyle delighted for match-winner

When the Scot sent on Tamir Cohen for the injured Daniel Sturridge
six minutes from time, Arsenal probably breathed a sigh of relief
after struggling to cope with the on-loan Chelsea striker.
Sturridge’s seventh goal in nine Bolton games had put his side into
the lead while, in contrast, Cohen was still looking for his first
goal of a traumatic season. A minor operation last summer had left
him playing catch-up to the rest of the squad then in December his
father Avi was left critically injured by a motorcycle accident.
Cohen returned to Israel to be at his father’s bedside but the
former Liverpool defender did not recover and died from his
injuries nine days later at the age of 54. When the Bolton
midfielder met Matthew Taylor’s corner with a powerful header in
the 90th minute to earn a 2-1 win, his immediate reaction was to
take off his shirt to reveal a picture of his father before
breaking down in tears. Avi Cohen had been very much in the
thoughts of the Bolton squad, who held up a shirt with the words
‘Get well soon Avi Cohen’ on the back during a victory over West
Brom on Boxing Day. Coyle said: “It was very emotional. Tamir’s had
such a difficult year because he had an operation in the summer and
when he came back in pre-season he was slightly behind the lads in
terms of fitness. “By the time he was up and running the lads were
flying and he had to be very patient. And then when he was on the
brink of coming back his father passed away. “A week before passing
away, Avi had spent a week with us at the training ground and we
all got to know him. When you saw Tamir with his team-mates, it was
emotional for them as well because they got to know Avi. He was
such a lovely man. “Tamir has had a huge burden of responsibility
as the leader of the household. His father was such a big name in
his country. But he’s trained every day and for him to get that
winner, I’m delighted.” Cohen’s tribute earned him a booking from
referee Mike Jones, who was roundly booed, but Coyle had no
complaints. He added: “Referees are charged with a set of rules and
the referee is not to understand the emotion of what happened. What
I would say is, if he’s going to score the winner every week, I’ll
take a yellow card for Tamir every week.”