Fulham 1-0 Bolton: Tom Cairney strikes winner
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 07/05/16 3:39pm
Fulham ended a disappointing campaign on a high as they disposed of relegated Bolton 1-0 at Craven Cottage.
A Tom Cairney curler was enough to separate the two sides in a game the West Londoners were on top throughout and left the visitors without a win on the road for the season.
Fulham were missing no less than five regular starters, including Moussa Dembele, while Bolton were able to welcome back Oscar Threlkeld.
The home side started the quickest, with Ryan Fredericks causing problems with his pace down the right-hand side, although a third-minute deflected shot from Dan Burn was the best effort.
Despite the dominance of the home side, chances continued to be few and far between.
However, Fredericks had to be withdrawn after just 18 minutes, with Richard Stearman his replacement.
The West London outfit continued to force a number of corners, with Matt Smith putting his header wide from a Ross McCormack outswinger after 21 minutes.
Bolton offered very little up front, with captain Darren Pratley blasting his effort on the half-hour mark well wide of the post of keeper Marcus Bettinelli.
Smith should have done much better 30 seconds later when, after finding himself free on the left flank, he put a very disappointing shot off target.
Dan Burn came closest towards the end of the first half as his solo run four minutes before the break ended with the ball crashing against the far post, Cairney blasting the follow-up well over.
Bolton started the second half in a more positive frame of mind and Emile Heskey headed his 54th-minute effort over the bar.
Fulham started to reassert themselves and just before the hour mark Smith was unable to get his header on target following a cross by McCormack.
Bolton goalkeeper Ben Amos was called into action after 67 minutes when he was forced to block a fierce drive by substitute Emerson Hyndman.
Amos was finally beaten after 77 minutes, despite blocking a header from Smith, when Cairney pounced on the rebound to deliver an excellent curled effort into the net from the edge of the box.
The goalscorer almost repeated his feat 10 minutes later but this time turned his effort just the wrong side of a post.
Amos pulled off two fantastic saves within a matter of seconds of each other, with one minute of regular time left, firstly from Smith and then a follow-up by McCormack.