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Macron Stadium (ATT 15,186) 13th December 2014 - Kick off 15:00

Bolton Bolton Wanderers vs Ipswich Town Ipswich

Bolton 0


Sky Bet Championship: Bolton and Ipswich share 0-0 stalemate

Last Updated: 15/12/14 1:50pm

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David McGoldrick: Unable to break the deadlock

David McGoldrick: Unable to break the deadlock

Ipswich missed the chance to replace Middlesbrough as Skybet Championship leaders as Eidur Gudjohnsen made his long anticipated comeback for improving Bolton.

Victory over the Trotters would have sent Mick McCarthy's side to the summit after Derby's 2-0 defeat against 'Boro earlier in the day.

The Tractor Boys created all the best chances as they extended their unbeaten run to eight games.

However, keeper Andy Lonergan kept them at bay, twice denying Jay Tabb as well as Daryl Murphy and David McGoldrick.

Gudjohnsen, 36, returned to his original English club as a 60th minute substitute having scored his last goal for the club against Ipswich 14 years earlier.

There was no fairytale comeback for the ex-Chelsea, Barcelona, Monaco and Spurs star, though, just a late booking for fouling Noel Hunt.

But with top scorer Craig Davies and on loan Joe Mason missing with hamstring trouble and Max Clayton carried off, he will get plenty of opportunity to open his account in the coming weeks.

Ipswich created the best of the early chances with McGoldrick's shot blocked by Dorian Dervite and Murphy denied by Lonergan's acrobatics.

Ex-Spurs and Southend man Dervite, despite a solid recent central defensive pairing with Matt Mills, was preferred to Josh Vela at right back.

David Wheater made his first senior appearance since August 30 to partner skipper Mills while teenager Conor Wilkinson was handed a full Championship debut.

Ipswich's only change from the 4-1 win over Leeds saw Teddy Bishop come in for injured Stephen Hunt.

Wanderers, with only two goals in their previous three outings, threatened briefly through Clayton before Christophe Berra produced a timely charge down.

It was virtually Clayton's final involvement before a knee injury ended his afternoon on a stretcher after just 26 minutes. And there was further disappointment for home fans when Neil Lennon introduced Jay Spearing as the ex-Crewe starlet's replacement rather than Gudjohnsen.

Spearing, marginalised since Lennon took over from Dougie Freedman, went close with a long range drive as Bolton reverted to a 3-5-2 re-shuffle.

Ipswich, unbeaten against Wanderers since the Lancastrians dropped out of the Premier League in 2012, struggled to make inroads against the new formation. And McGoldrick was booked for bringing down regular Bolton outlet, Liam Feeney.

However, the Tractor Boys improved after the break with Lonergan spreading himself superbly to deny Tabb a 56th minute opener.

Another little-and-large confrontation between the two ended with Lonergan flinging himself to keep out the pint-sized midfielder's diving header.

In between, Gudjohnsen received a hero's welcome as he replaced Darren Pratley on the hour. The Icelander's presence certainly lifted the atmosphere inside the hail-lashed Macron Stadium, although McGoldrick almost ruined the mood with a left foot shot from the edge of the area.

When the Republic of Ireland striker did hit the target, Lonergan was again equal to the task.

In contrast, Wanderers didn't force a single save out of Bartosz Bialkowski and stoppage-time appeals for handball against Berra were waved aside.

However, Lennon's side are now six unbeaten with three successive clean sheets as they continue to climb up the table.

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Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Watford 44 85
2 Bournemouth 44 84
3 Middlesbrough 44 84
4 Norwich City 44 82
5 Derby County 44 76
6 Ipswich Town 44 75
7 Brentford 44 72
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 44 72
9 Blackburn Rovers 43 60
10 Charlton Athletic 44 60
11 Nottingham Forest 44 59
12 Sheffield Wednesday 44 59
13 Cardiff City 44 56
14 Birmingham City 43 54
15 Huddersfield Town 44 53
16 Leeds United 44 52
17 Bolton Wanderers 44 51
18 Fulham 44 49
19 Reading 42 47
20 Brighton and Hove Albion 44 46
21 Rotherham United 43 44
22 Millwall 43 40
23 Wigan Athletic 44 39
24 Blackpool 44 25