Bolton Wanderers 1-1 Fulham: Player ratings

by Dan on February 11, 2018

Marks out of ten as Fulham had to settle for a point at the Macron Stadium yesterday afternoon …

Marcus Bettinelli: The big debate on the way home last night was whether Bettinelli should have done better with Adam Le Fondre’s extraordinary equaliser. My own view is that to blame him for conceding that strike is exceptionally harsh – the pace and power of the hit would have made it difficult for any goalkeeper. In any case, Bettinelli made a vital save from Le Fondre’s deflected effort shortly afterwards – parrying it away full stretch – and that had already denied Zac Clough twice in the first half to keep Fulham in front. 7

Ryan Fredericks: A mixed afternoon for Fulham’s right back. Looked a real threat going forward in the first half but couldn’t find the crossing consistency to allow the Whites to make too much of the way he was beating the Bolton defence with ease. Faded a little in the second period as the home side pinned Fulham back for a bit after levelling the contest – and was once again unable to supply a game-changing cross as the Whites pushed for a winner late on. 6

Matt Targett: Probably Fulham’s man of the match. Even though he is an adventurous full back in the mould that Slavisa Jokanovic likes, it was still a surprise to see him the first to react to Lucas Piazon’s header back across goal after five minutes. Buried the header beautifully to put the visitors ahead and continued to link up effectively with Ryan Sessegnon throughout. Wasn’t significantly troubled defensively and showed great spirit to come back from being cynically taken out on the touchline by Mark Little. 8

Tomas Kalas: This was a solid outing from the Czech centre half, but you sense that he’s just not as commanding in his second season at Craven Cottage as he was last year. Looked composed on the ball and dealt with most of Bolton’s attacks on the floor, but seemed suspect under the high ball when Wanderers went a bit more direct. Recovered well from a head injury in the second half – but will ultimately be disappointed not to keep a clean sheet. 6

Tim Ream: The American might have expected a warmer welcome back at his old stomping ground than to elbowed in the face and to be booed for his apparent timewasting by then same home fans who all applauded him after the final whistle. Did well to nullify the threat of Clough and Ameobi for most of the contest and distributed the ball well, but looked more than a little vulnerable when the home side pumped long balls forward. 7

Kevin McDonald: Not the stand-in skipper’s most effective game yesterday. He worked the ball around well as ever and provided plenty of energy and organisation, but sometimes found himself ahead of the play – failing to mop up from his usual holding role. A glorious chance arrived at Clough’s feet because of this in the first half. Could be seen exhorting the Fulham side to go again after the Bolton equaliser – which they did, but the Whites couldn’t grab a second. 6

Stefan Johansen: The Norwegian covered plenty of ground once again in the midfield, but struggled a little to get into the contest in the first half. Was far more effective in the second period and seemed to have more of a license to roam once Tom Cairney replaced Oliver Norwood late in the second half. Will be wondering how he failed to score at the death from the brilliant chance that he fashioned for himself with a slalom run right across the penalty area that would have put Ricky Villa to shame had he slotted home the winner. Should have gone across the keeper, but rippled the side netting inside. 6

Ollie Norwood: A rather disappointing display from the Northern Irish midfielder, who struggled to find the precision in his passing or to lift the tempo beyond the pedestrian, which seemed a waste after Fulham’s red-hot start. Several balls went astray and some his supply lacked the incision necessary in the final third, before Norwood seemed to be overwhelmed a little as Bolton grew in confidence after their goal. Was replaced by Tom Cairney as Fulham sought more creativity with time ticking away. 5

Lucas Piazon: A frustrating afternoon for the Brazilian forward, who failed to build on his game-changing display against Nottingham Forest last time out. Piazon started superbly – showing great awarness to guide Ryan Sessegnon’s cross back across goal for Targett’s opener – but gradually drifted out of the contest. Seemed to be a little too lightweight on a day when Bolton snapped into tackles and his usual tricks and flicks never seemed to come off. Wasn’t a surprise when Jokanovic opted to hook him early in the second half. 6

Ryan Sessegnon: You wonder whether the exertions of so much senior football might just be catching up with the 17 year-old again. Even though he looked tired by the end, Sessegnon’s intelligent movement and ceaseless running still looked posed real problems for the home defence – despite the fact that Fulham couldn’t find a way to take home all three points. Crossed brilliantly for Piazon to create the opening goal and went on a couple of mazy dribbles after that. Had a shot bravely blocked by Mark Beevers and looked like he was in right at the end, only for a heavy touch to let him down. 6

Rui Fonte: Unfortunately, the Portuguese forward’s day was summed up by the glaring miss that might have put Fulham on easy street a few minutes after Targett had headed the Whites ahead. He did very well to rid David Wheater of possession and run through on goal but should have left Ben Alnwick with no chance. Made a number of intelligent runs, but was too often easily muscled out of it but Bolton’s tough centre halves. There was an inevitability about his afternoon coming to an early end – with Jokanovic introducing Mitrovic just after the break. 5

Substitutes:

Aleksandar Mitrovic (on for Rui Fonte, 51): The Serbian almost had an immediate impact, by supplying a golden opportunity for his fellow substitute Kamara with his first touches of the ball. Might have done better than send a shot on the turn trickling wide with five minutes left, but was disappointingly ineffective for the rest of his time on the pitch. Still looks short of a gallop – and can only benefit from more minutes under his belt. 6

Aboubakar Kamara (on for Lucas Piazon, 51): Livened up the Fulham attack in his own inimitable style, even if he didn’t track back as much as Jokanovic would have wanted. Missed an absolute sitter with his first touch when stabbing Mitrovic’s great pull back wide from six yards out – but you couldn’t fault his effort. The Frenchman’s pace and power caused some issues for the Bolton back line but Fulham couldn’t supply him regularly enough to take advantage. 7

Tom Cairney (on for Ollie Norwood, 74): Encouraging to see the skipper back on the park again after only a couple of days training this week. Immediately gave Fulham that greater creativity and penetration in the final third after replacing Norwood and got the Whites going forward again after they had looked shaky in the aftermath of Bolton’s equaliser. Looked certain to score when he slid in seven yards out in the dying embers only for Wheater to divert the ball behind for a corner. 6

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