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Sky Bet Championship

St. Andrew's Stadium (ATT 15,149) 18th October 2014 - Kick off 15:00

Birm'ham Birmingham City vs Bolton Wanderers Bolton

Birm'ham 0

D Randolph (S/O 82)

ft

Bolton 1

M Mills (20)

Sky Bet Championship: Neil Lennon guides Bolton to win at Birmingham

Last Updated: 18/10/14 5:27pm

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Matt Mills: Scores for Bolton against Birmingham

Matt Mills: Scores for Bolton against Birmingham

New Bolton manager Neil Lennon made a typically explosive start to his English managerial career as he was sent to the stands while his rejuvenated side took three Sky Bet Championship points from 10-man Birmingham.

The former Celtic boss took over from Dougie Freedman this week with his new team stuck on the bottom of the table.

However, the Trotters ended a five-match losing streak courtesy of Matt Mills' first-half header and held on for a 1-0 win despite Craig Davies missing a late penalty after goalkeeper Darren Randolph was sent off.

Lennon's name was being chanted by the Bolton fans before his tenure had even begun on the field.

A lively start saw Birmingham winger Koby Arthur's shot deflect wide before Dorian Dervite and Jermaine Beckford both headed wide for Bolton.

Bolton defender Mills was booked in the 14th minute for a timely foul on Demarai Gray. David Cotterill's resulting free-kick clipped the bar, to Mills' relief.

Gray mis-kicked over the bar in the 19th minute but seconds later, the visitors took the lead against the run of play.

Captain Jay Spearing's cross from a corner from the right was perfectly flighted for Mills to power home a header, prompting Lennon to sprint down the touchline pumping his fists.

Birmingham were creating half-chances and came close when Gray was fed by Stephen Gleeson, pushed on and forced a good save by Andy Lonergan with his curling effort just before the break.

Further half-chances came and went for Gray and Arthur before the former dragged a volley wide as Lee Clark's side pushed for a way back into the match. Their profligacy continued as fellow academy product Arthur wildly missed the target yet again.

The effervescent Gray hit the bar in the 78th minute with a superb curling effort, which Lonergan brilliantly tipped onto the woodwork.

It looked over as a contest when Bolton won penalty in the 82nd minute. Blues right-back Paul Caddis played goalkeeper Randolph into trouble with a backpass under pressure from Davies and the Irishman felled the forward to earn himself a red card.

Forward Lee Novak, on as an earlier substitute, donned the goalkeeping gloves and was delighted to see Davies blaze the penalty high into the stands.

Lennon, in the melee, was sent to the stands for an infringement on the touchline.

Birmingham had a penalty shout for handball turned down by referee Mark Haywood during six minutes of added time but that was as close as they came.

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Matches

Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bournemouth 46 90
2 Watford 46 89
3 Norwich City 46 86
4 Middlesbrough 46 85
5 Brentford 46 78
6 Ipswich Town 46 78
7 Wolverhampton Wanderers 46 78
8 Derby County 46 77
9 Blackburn Rovers 46 67
10 Birmingham City 46 63
11 Cardiff City 46 62
12 Charlton Athletic 46 60
13 Sheffield Wednesday 46 60
14 Nottingham Forest 46 59
15 Leeds United 46 56
16 Huddersfield Town 46 55
17 Fulham 46 52
18 Bolton Wanderers 46 51
19 Reading 46 50
20 Brighton and Hove Albion 46 47
21 Rotherham United 46 46
22 Millwall 46 41
23 Wigan Athletic 46 39
24 Blackpool 46 26

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