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Coyle rues missed penalty

7 October 2012

Owen Coyle admitted his Bolton side only had themselves to blame for their latest setback after the 2-1 defeat at Millwall.

Chris Eagles went from hero to zero, crashing in a fine free-kick to haul Bolton level, after Darius Henderson's first-half opener for the Lions, only to then miss a penalty to put them ahead. And Henderson stole the points for Millwall at the death as Coyle's side slipped to a fourth defeat on the road this season.

"The bottom line is we missed a penalty and then shot ourselves in the foot," said the Bolton boss.

Coyle added: "The second half was better, we got back in it and then had a penalty. If it had gone in I think we'd have gone on to win the game, but we spurned the opportunity and got bitten on the bum at the end, so it's hard to take."

Danny Shittu had already had a goal disallowed when the hosts got their noses in front in the 17th minute, Henderson scoring from the edge of the area. Eagles levelled at the start of the second half when his clever, low free-kick sneaked past Lions keeper David Forde.

Then came the turning point of the match when Eagles was caught in the area by Jimmy Abdou. The winger confidently stepped up to take the spot-kick, but blazed it high over the crossbar.

The momentum swung back to Millwall, backed by their vociferous crowd, and Henderson pounced on Zat Knight's slip to fire his dramatic winner and increase the pressure on Coyle.

"I'm not naive, that's the nature of football, I know how it works," said Coyle. "It's up to us to win games and if we don't I'm the same as any manager in the country. But I've been a manager eight years now and seven of those have been an incredible high, but I never got carried away. So as horrible as I'm feeling now I won't get too low about it."

Victory came as a relief to Millwall boss Kenny Jackett, whose side climbed out of the bottom three.

"It's a very good home win and also makes our last two points away from home look very good," he said. "The penalty was a turning point. It got our crowd going and the players responded."

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