Trotters too hot for Toffees

Sturridge is looking like one of the signings of the January

transfer window after grabbing his third goal in three games for

the Trotters. On loan from Chelsea, the England Under-21 striker

put the match out of Everton’s reach after Gary Cahill opened the

scoring with his first goal of the season. It was just the result

the club were looking for after losing five out of their previous

seven league games. They got off to a perfect start with Cahill

opening the scoring in the 10th minute following Stuart Holden’s

free-kick on the left flank. He peeled away from his marker and saw

his header come off Everton defender John Heitinga and wrong-footed

Tim Howard. Everton responded and should have equalised in 17th

minute when Tim Cahill was left unmarked at the back post but

volleyed wide following a cross from Leighton Baines. Bolton were

forced to make a switch in the 27th minute with defender Zat Knight

unable to continue. He fell awkwardly after tangling with Victor

Anichebe and was replaced by David Wheater. The home side kept up

the pressure and won a free-kick 20 yards out after Heitinga was

adjudged to have tripped Sturridge as he tried to race forward.

Matt Taylor stepped up but only succeeded in drilling his effort

into the arms of Howard. Everton again found themselves on the back

foot in the 39th minute when Holden delivered a free-kick to the

back post. Howard, however, punched clear with Wheater waiting for

any slip-ups. Play switched down the other end and Cahill tested

Bolton goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen from the edge of the area. The

home side were looking the brighter of the two teams at this stage

and Taylor attempted to pick out Sturridge in the area a minute

before half-time. However Phil Neville was perfectly positioned and

made the interception at the post to concede a corner, much to

Everton’s relief. Bolton started the second half on the front foot

and won a free-kick in the 51st minute after Sturridge was tripped

by Marouane Fellaini. Taylor stepped up 20 yards out but his effort

failed to breach the defensive wall. Everton suddenly turned up the

pace and Anichebe got into a good position in the area in the 56th

minute only for Cahill to make a crucial block for Bolton. Then

Fellaini was set up by Seamus Coleman but he sent his effort high

and wide of the woodwork. Bolton manager Owen Coyle decided to

freshen things up in the 59th minute by bringing on Lee Chung-yong

for Taylor. This was a good spell by Everton with Cahill beginning

to find more room in and around the area. He then sent a snap shot

over the bar five minutes later. However Bolton went 2-0 ahead in

the 67th minute with Sturridge’s third goal in three matches since

arriving on loan from Chelsea. The striker smashed the ball into

the corner from an acute angle following a flick-on from Lee.

Holden found the net for Bolton in the 80th minute after a back

heel from Sturridge. However, referee Lee Probert ruled out the

American’s effort, the lruling that Sturridge had run the ball over

the by-line. Everton responded and substitute Jose Baxter rattled

in a shot three minutes later that was parried by Jaaskelainen.

Johan Elmander almost added a third for Bolton two minutes after

Kevin Davies’ knock-on, only to see his effort go marginally wide

of the target. While Bolton were celebrating, these remain worrying

times for Everton after only two wins in the league on the road.