Arsenal draws 0-0 at Bolton in Premier League
Updated: February 01, 2012, 18:18
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BOLTON, England(AP) Arsenal's hopes of climbing back into the Champions League positions in the Premier League took a blow after being held to a 0-0 draw at lowly Bolton on Wednesday.
Netherlands striker Robin van Persie couldn't add to his league-high tally of 19 goals, hitting the goal frame twice in a match at Reebok Stadium that Arsenal dominated.
Wingers Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also squandered opportunities to lift Arsenal above Liverpool in the standings to fifth place, with the team even dropping a place as a result of Newcastle's 2-0 win at Blackburn.
Arsenal at least ended a run of three straight defeats but is now five points off the top four with 15 matches remaining.
"We have come through a difficult period and we have, of course, a fight in front of us - but we are ready for it,'' Wenger said.
Bolton, meanwhile, earned a precious point in its battle for survival and is now two clear of the relegation zone in 17th, but the team had to weather a storm in the second half before finishing its first match without conceding a goal since November.
Van Persie, who had his header cleared off the line in the ninth minute, first hit the frame just after the break when his flick from a cross by Bacary Sagna - making his first start for four months after injury - rebounded back off the near post.
Aaron Ramsey stabbed wide, before Van Persie struck the bar with a deft chip that had goalkeeper Adam Bogdan well beaten.
Bolton could even have nicked a scarcely deserved winner had referee Chris Foy penalized Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny for a challenge on Mark Davies.
The penalty wasn't awarded and Arsenal had to make do with a point, its first in four games to leave the team without a league win in 2012.