REPORT: BOLTON 2 ALBION 2
- Gary Madine scores 94th-minute equaliser for Bolton
- Dale Stephens and Jamie Murphy put Albion 2-0 up
- Jamie Murphy controversially sent off
- Bobby Zamora makes first start of the season
Two goals in four first-half minutes put the Seagulls in command but a Neil Danns strike reduced the deficit before the break, and Chris Hughton’s men had to survive the closing stages of the match a man light after Jamie Murphy saw red on 75 minutes.
The Seagulls almost held out but Madine scored in stoppage time to prevent Albion from extending their lead at the top of the Championship to six points, however Hughton’s side remain undefeated in the league.
Bobby Zamora made his first start of the season, replacing the injured Tomer Hemed, while Uwe Huenemeier and Sam Baldock returned to the starting XI after missing the 0-0 draw with Wolves. Andrew Crofts was named on the bench having completed his recovery from an ACL injury but Kazenga LuaLua missed the game.
Wanderers started brightly and Gordon Greer was on hand to deny Max Clayton from scoring after the Bolton man nipped past David Stockdale, before the Albion keeper made an excellent save to tip Clayton’s looping effort over the bar.
In an open and high-energy beginning, Baldock went close for the Seagulls, only to be flagged for offside, and Stockdale made another decent stop to this time push away Liam Feeney’s fizzing drive.
Murphy dropped an ambitious 30-yard volley just over but Bolton-born Stephens made no mistake in finding the net on 31 minutes as Albion struck twice in quick succession.
The first came as Zamora held up the ball before rolling it into the path of the on-rushing midfielder, who powered home low and hard. One became two four minutes later as Zamora was again involved, sliding Liam Rosenior in down the right and the defender’s low cross was finished from close range by Murphy.
Albion looked in control but the hosts clawed their way back into the game as Neil Danns found the bottom corner from the edge of the area to reduce the arrears.
Hughton’s men came out firing after the break and Ben Amos had to be at his best to keep the Seagulls at bay as he beat away Rosenior’s effort.
The Seagulls were dictating matters and continued to chip away at the Bolton defence but the Albion game plan was dealt a blow when Murphy was given a straight red card for a tackle on Danns.
The extra man told as Stockdale made a fine save with his legs from Madine and the hosts laid siege to the Albion goal in search of an equaliser.
Hearts were in Albion mouths as the clock ticked past the 90th minute as Madine had the ball in the net but it was disallowed for a foul on Stockdale.
But the Bolton striker was not to be denied as he netted just two minutes later, climbing highest to head home and secure the hosts a point.