Palace and Bolton Wanderers will have to face off one more time to try and reach the FA Cup fourth round as they played out a goalless draw at the Macron Stadium.
Sam Allardyce couldn’t quite find a way to claim his first win as Eagles boss against his former club, with both sides hitting the wood work during the encounter, however they will have to be separated at Selhurst Park in a replay with neither goalkeeper beaten during the 90 minutes.
There were early chances for both sides and on his Eagles debut, Loic Remy dragged the game’s first effort wide before Julian Speroni – on the occasion of his record 389th appearance as a goalkeeper for Palace – was called into action to push away a fierce blast from James Henry after the midfielder cut inside from the right.
Henry was the biggest goal threat in the early stages and he tested the Eagles custodian again on 14 minutes when he drove goalwards from 25 yards but Speroni claimed the shot, and then he was afforded a free header following an Andrew Taylor cross but nodded a good chance over; something that Gary Madine was also guilty of only a couple of minutes later as the Trotters enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges.
However Palace grew into the game and had a good spell of their own. Remy then went close again when a neat backheel by Fraizer Campbell gave him a sight of goal but Ben Alnwick was equal to his 20-yard effort, and then on 30 minutes the visitors had a great opportunity to take the lead when Campbell broke away, jinked into the area and teed up Mathieu Flamini, but when one-on-one with Alnwick the Frenchman skied over.
They went closer three minutes later when Remy again took aim and thumped a powerful blast from outside the box against the base of the post, and on a lively debut the striker saw a toe-poke from a tight angle flicked away by the boot of Alnwick as the Eagles probed for an opener.
Remy came off at half-time after a useful 45 minutes under his belt, but once again Bolton started the half brighter and Henry was at the forefront of it again. He should have put the hosts in the lead when he connected with a Jay Spearing cross to the back post six yards out but his side-footed volley flew well off target, and then a couple of minutes later he picked up a loose ball and struck a sweet effort from 30 yards which wasn’t too far away from the top corner of Speroni’s net.
Allardyce’s side’s first opportunity of the second 45 came when Joe Ledley’s flicked header was stopped by Alnwick, but Wanderers broke and they came so close to snatching the lead when Josh Vela got on the end of a Henry delivery but saw his header come off the post with Speroni beaten.
Chances were harder to come by as the mist rolled around the ground as the game neared its conclusion, but Henry would have one more attempt when he saw a shot deflected into the side-netting with seven minutes remaining, and from the resulting corner Jamie Proctor headed tamely at Speroni as sides scrapped it out for a replay in SE25 later this month.
Bolton: Alnwick, Wilson, Wheater, Beevers, A Taylor, Spearing, Thorpe, Henry (C. Taylor 85), Vela, Clough (Clayton 80), Madine (Proctor 80). Subs not used: Turner, Moxey, Derik, Trotter.
Palace: Speroni, Ward, Kelly, Delaney, Fryers, Flamini, Ledley (Townsend 65), Mutch, Lee, Campbell (Kaikai 80), Remy (Cabaye 46). Subs not used: Perntreou, Tomkins, Husin, Wan-Bissaka.