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Bolton Wanderers 2018

At the Home of Sky Bet Championship side Bolton Wanderers, two teams of skilful and exciting players walked out onto the Macron Stadium turf, on what was a fine May evening. The Home team were in White and the Away team were in Purple. The end-to-end game eventually finishing 6-5 to the Whites, with No 6 Sammy Cardwell stealing the headlines with his wonderful 5 goals for the Home side, helping them claim a narrow victory.

Date: Thursday 10th May 2018
Venue: The Macron Stadium
Bolton Wanderers (Home) vs Bolton Wanderers (Away)
Kick Off: 18:00 pm

As the Home side got the first half underway, they instantly started to enjoy large amounts of possession of the ball and 4 mins into the game the ball was picked up by the Home side’s No 6 Sammy Cardwell just inside the Away team’s half, he was then able to skip past a couple of defenders before coolly converting past the Away team’s goalkeeper Damian Bradley to give the Home side an early lead (1-0).

After this early goal, the Away side really started to grow back into the game and on the 10 min mark, their efforts were rewarded when central midfielder Sam Cunningham played a wonderful one-two with the centre forward No 11 Ross Adamson before slotting Home a great left footed effort to draw the Away side level, in what was beginning to became a great spectacle for the Wanderers fans in attendance (1-1).

This goal really put the wind in the sales of the Away side and they became more and more confident with every pass and 5 mins later they were ahead. Their centre forward Ross Adamson let fly with an effort from the edge of the area and the ball deflected off off Sam Cunningham and somewhat fortuitously loop into the back of the net, leaving Allan Todd in the Home keeper helpless (1-2).

However, 60 seconds later the Home side were given a route straight back into the game, as a defensive mix up between the Away keeper Damian Bradley and centre half Mark Done allowed striker Dean Twyman to pounce and slide the ball Home into an empty net, ultimately drawing the game level once again with only 16 mins played (2-2).

The 1st half began to even out, with both sides having numerous chances without really troubling either keeper, but it was the Home side’s No 6 Sammy Cardwell who was quickly becoming the star man and in the 39th min his pure brilliance was on show again, as his wonderful display of skill and trickery allowed him to dribble past what seemed to be most of the Away side’s defence and then he was able to steer his close range effort past Damian Bradley in the Away goal, to reclaim the Home side’s advantage (3-2)

Following this goal, perhaps understandably the energy levels seemed to drop off slightly, with both sides waiting for the half time whistle to come! 

When half time finally arrived, the score remained 3-2 to the Home side. It had been a very even first half, the Home side started much quicker, but the Away side were allowed a way back into the game, before Home No 6 Sammy Cardwell’s sheer excellence proved to be the difference between the two sides at the break (3-2).

Half-Time: Bolton (Home) 3 - 2 Bolton (Away)

As the Away team got the 2nd half underway, they were looking to get that all-important equaliser as quickly as possible, but it was the Home side who soon had the 1st chance of the 2nd half as No 8 Jaoo Alhinho saw his effort from the edge of the box, trickle past the goal. 

On the 55th min as the Home side continued to push to extend their advantage, No 9 Kevin Banks delivered a wonderful corner kick, which was well saved by Damian Bradley in the Away goal, however the ball fell to star man No 6 Sammy Cardwell who tried his hand at an acrobatic effort. This was again saved comfortably by Damian Bradley, who quickly launched his team onto the counter attack. 

His throw-out found goal scorer Sam Cunningham, who linked up with the other goal scorer Ross Adamson. The striker was able to drive at the defence and try a lobbed through ball, Home Captain Aaron McGarry almost cut it out, however his header set up the ball perfectly for Sam Cunningham and the No 10’s perfectly executed half volley flew past the goalkeeper, drawing his side level once again and capping off a fine counter attacking move by the Away side (3-3).

Less than a minute later the Home side won a corner which was again delivered fantastically by No 9 Kevin Banks, his set piece couldn’t find the head of any Home attackers, but it fell to that man No 6 Sammy Cardwell again, who was able to unleash a rocket of a shot, which flew past everyone and put the Home side back in front again. His hat-trick goal capping what was already a fine day for the skilful midfielder (4-3). 

Following this goal, the Away side really started to up their tempt as they knew they had to get back into the game as quickly as possible, with time seemingly starting to run out, the two star men for the Away side, Sam Cunningham and Ross Adamson continued to link up well, forcing the Home defence into giving Away corners, however nothing came of their pressure. 

However in the 66th min a moment of confusion gave the Away side a chance to get back into the game. No 4 Aaron McGarry played the ball back to the Home keeper Allan Todd, but Todd was forced into a save, the unforgiving referee deemed it a back pass giving the Away side an indirect free kick on the edge of the six-yard box. 
Everyone was back to defend for the Home side, but No 11 Ross Adamson’s late darting run into the box was unnoticed apart from the set piece taker No 10 Sam Cunningham who picked him out perfectly and Adamson was able to pass the ball into the net to claim his 2nd goal of the game and make it all square once again (4-4).

The game continued to produce end to end action and in the 70th min the Home side’s star man Sammy Cardwell added another fine goal to his growing collection. This time he pounced on a mistake in the Home team’s midfield and went on a mazy run past their defence, before smashing home his 4th goal of the day! With just 20 mins left to play the Home side were back in front once again (5-4).

The Away side knew they had to give everything in the final quarter of the match and Billy Eckersley was unlucky not to score with a long range effort which flew over the bar. As the team in Purple pushed for the equaliser this created gaps at the back and the pace of No 7 Matthew Walker really started to exploit this space and his through ball was almost perfect until No 11 Dean Twyman was deemed to be offside. 

The Away side really started to crank up the pressure but the Home defence stood strong and defended really well as a unit, with the two centre halves Aaron McGarry and Louis Carrigan communicating well together and this limited any goal scoring opportunities for the Away side. 

With just under 10 mins remaining the Away side were able to produce a fine move with No 10 Sam Cunningham dribbling past a couple of players, before sliding the ball to his striker Ross Adamson, however the No 11’s effort flew straight into the arms of Allan Todd in the Home goal and the score remained 5-4. 

As the game reached the 86th min, the Home side were able to hit the Away side with what looked like a killer blow. An excellent team move was started by Joao Alhinho, the No 8 picked the ball up in the centre of the pitch and played it out wide to Kevin Banks, the striker slid it to No 7 Matthew Walker, whose neat step-over created space for him to pick out Sammy Cardwell, the No 6 played a nice one-two with the man who started the move Joao Alhinho, before slotting home his 5th goal of the game, to finish what was a fantastic team move. Fittingly the Home team’s star man was the player to seal the victory for his side (6-4)!

The Away side weren’t finished yet though and they managed tried to claw something back from the game with a late push, No 11 Ross Adamson finally able to claim his hat trick goal with a neat finish right on 90 mins to make it a nervy end for the Home side (6-5).

However the full-time whistle arrived soon after and it was to be the Home side’s day. The Away side had constantly battled back from behind but ultimately they just ran out of steam towards the end. It had been an enthralling end-to-end encounter and both team’s showed moments of pure class, which was fitting for a game in such a wonderful stadium. The Home side eventually ran out 6-5 winners, with 5 of the goals coming from No 6 Sammy Cardwell, but there was also a wonderful hat-trick by the Away side’s No 11 Ross Adamson. 

Huge thanks again to Bolton Wanderers FC and the Bolton Wanderers Community Trust for their fantastic support and to all our players for their excellent efforts on the hallowed turf. 

Full-Time: Bolton (Home) 6 - 5 Bolton (Away)

Man of the Match Home: Sammy Cardwell 
Man of the Match Away: Sam Cunningham 
Moment of the Match: Ross Adamson

Home Team: Allan Todd, Matthew Carrigan, Aaron McGarry (C), Louis Carrigan, Sammy Cardwell, Matthew Walker, Joao Alhinho, Kevin Banks, David Cope, Dean Twyman, Steve Hilton, Kevin Maree
Home Mascot: Lily Cardwell 

Away Team: Damian Bradley, Alan Quilter, Mark Done (C), Alex Coward, Darren Valentine, Matthew Marcroft, David Knowles, Steve Mitchell, Sam Cunningham, Ross Adamson, Billy Eckersley, Gareth Carrigan, Maurice Lawson
Away Mascot: Elizabeth Done 

Match Report written by Simon Cheshire.

Due to circumstances beyond his control our usual photographer was unable to cover the game. However club staff did take some photographs of the teams and the match action and these have been forwarded to our players free of charge. 

The good news was that the match action was filmed by 'Film My Match' and to order a copy of the video footage please follow the link here >> 
and complete payment for £20 choosing 'Payment Type' = ‘Other’ and a description e.g. ‘Bolton 2018 – Video Footage’. 

"Just to let you know that we had a great day yesterday. Very well organised again and all the team there were very friendly.
Gareth Carrigan – Away Team No.15

Pleasure again to play for @FootballAid tonight at Bolton. Nice to see a few familiar faces too, hope everyone enjoyed themselves and had a safe journey Home! 
Matthew Walker – Home Team No.7

Just about recovered from my 65 to 70 mins at the Macron Stadium. I am sure the pitch gets bigger each year. Nevertheless I had an enjoyable time: some of the players remembered me from previous games. However when I told our captain that I had a couple of seasons with Warrington Town in 1967/68 he said he was not even born then! Still, if the legs and other parts hold out I could try again next year.
Maurice Lawson – Away Team No.17

Another great experience at Bolton Wanderers FC, well done everyone at Football Aid – I’ll be back next year!
Aaron McGarry – Home Team No.4