Bolton Wanderers 3 Everton 2

Last updated : 15 May 2005 By Footymad Previewer
Ten-man Bolton Wanderers signed off on a winning note and sixth place in the Premiership with a battling performance against an Everton side who beat them to a Champions League place.

With both sides having already booked a European place for next season - Wanderers have qualified for the UEFA Cup - this was a match with supposedly nothing to play for.

Yet referee Neale Barry had his work cut out keeping the lid on a highly charged affair that saw three first-half bookings and ultimately a straight red card in first-half added time for home defender Bruno N'Gotty.

He was seen by the referee's assistant hitting out at Tim Cahill after the Everton man had caught him with an elbow.

Cahill was shown a yellow card for his part in the incident and there were other first-half cautions for Wanderers players El Hadji Diouf and Kevin Davies.

In between there was no shortage of goalmouth action with both sides keeping the keepers on their toes

That came after Everton had raced into a ninth minute lead when Cahill reacted first to hook the ball into the net, while Wanderers were complaining of a foul on keeper Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Wanderers followed that up with good efforts from Diouf and Gary Speed, before Stelios Giannakopoulos brought out a good smothering save from Everton keeper Richard Wright on the stroke of half-time.

Jay-Jay Okocha went close with two efforts immediately after half-time but ten-man Wanderers finally drew level in the 53rd minute when Tunisian defender Radhi Jaidi climbed high to head in Fernando Hierro's free-kick.

That merely signalled a flurry of goals with another three coming in the space of five hectic minutes.

First, Davies fired Wanderers ahead in the 61st minute before Everton levelled through Lee Carsley's 63rd minute effort. But Wanderers regained the lead again three minutes later when Giannakopoulos scored his eighth of the season.

There was an emotional send-off for Wanderers midfield man Hierro. The 37-year-old former Real Madrid captain was playing his last game before retiring and received a standing ovation when he was replaced by Kevin Nolan in the 67th minute.