Big Sam hails turnaround
By Chris Stanton
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Sam Allardyce hailed Bolton for an improved second half performance at Newcastle.
Bolton manager Sam Allardyce hailed his side's commitment, as a much improved second half performance earned the reward of a 2-1 win at Newcastle.
The Trotters trailed at the break to a controversial penalty converted by Shola Ameobi, but two goals from El Hadji Diouf in the space of 97 second half seconds saw the visitors leave St James' Park with all three points.
"It gives us great satisfaction to come away with a win from a place like this after going a goal behind," Allardyce told Sky Sports 1.
"The players deserve all the credit for a turnaround in performance. Inept in the first half, they didn't look like they were going to compete with Newcastle today which is one of our strengths, particularly away from home.
"That [the penalty] went against us, but we changed it at half time and went to squeeze from the front.
"That put them under pressure and allowed us to get at their back four which we felt was the weakest part of their team and it's proven to be so.
"The first half was perhaps my own fault, because I came with a tactic of dropping off in our own half and letting them have the ball in their own.
"But when they got the ball in our half we never closed them down. We worked on stopping the wide men crossing, but in the first few minutes they put three or four in!
"But we changed it - the front three were to close down their back four and we would win the ball in midfield and go from there."
Allardyce was particularly pleased for Diouf to claim two goals, and has now backed his side to build on their third place position in the fledgling Premiership standings.
"Two very, very good goals for Dioufy and I'm pleased with that," added Allardyce.
"It says a lot to everybody on the outside looking in and a consistent run of results and coming from behind away from home shows the measure of our commitment and quality this year."