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Coyle disappointed at 'playground' defending

Bolton manager Owen Coyle admitted his players came up short of expectations at both ends of the field in yesterday's 3-0 Premier League defeat at Lancashire rivals Blackburn.

Niko Kalinic broke the deadlock just before half-time and second-half strikes from substitute Jason Roberts and defender Gael Givet secured Rovers' biggest win of the season.

Coyle said: "I was disappointed with our performance today. It's no excuse to say you've played a lot of games, we still expect better than what we offered today. I think there was a 20-minute period at the start of the second half where we looked like ourselves and could have had an equaliser.

"We paid a heavy price and the goals we lost; I wouldn't expect to lose those goals in the school playground.

"There were two Blackburn players in offside positions for the second but they didn't affect the goal and Sam Ricketts was certainly playing Roberts onside, the goalscorer, so there's no argument there from my point of view.

"The third goal, we've allowed a short free-kick to be taken and put no pressure on the ball.

"That was really disappointing given how well we've been defending of late -- and obviously not scoring, given the opportunities we had.

"When you do those two things well, you get results and points, and we didn't do that well enough -- it's as simple as that."

Sam Allardyce, in contrast, was delighted as Blackburn finally shook off their goalscoring shackles.

"It was a fantastic day for us and a very important three points," said the Rovers boss.

"It's our biggest win of the season and four wins on the trot at Ewood Park."

The match was not without alarm for Allardyce, with Wanderers enjoying a rare spell of pressure during a heavy snowstorm early in the second half with the score at 1-0, and Allardyce hailed the importance of Paul Robinson's save from Chung-yong Lee.

But Junior Hoilett and Steven Nzonzi could have extended the lead before Roberts' scruffy goal, after which point Allardyce could relax once more.

"It was a difficult game," he added. "One: because of the weather; two: it's a local derby.

"We deserved a 1-0 lead in the first half. We then sat back on that a little too much and Bolton had their best spell.

"But when their best chance came we've got Paul Robinson, who made a match-winning save."


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