On this day: Stoke City thrash Bolton Wanderers to reach FA Cup final

Sports Mole looks back at Stoke City's 5-0 FA Cup semi-final win over Bolton Wanderers in 2011.

Stoke City have appeared in the FA Cup final just once in their 152-year history, losing to Manchester City in 2011 in the Wembley showpiece.

However, it was an emphatic performance in the semi-final that sent the Potters through, as they crushed Bolton Wanderers 5-0 at the national stadium on this day in 2011.

Jonathan Walters (R) of Stoke celebrates with his team scoring the fourth goal during the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON semi final match between Bolton Wanderers and Stoke City at Wembley Stadium on April 17, 2011© Getty Images

A Danny Higginbotham winner in their 2-1 victory over West Ham United in the quarter-finals secured Tony Pulis's side a place in the last four, as well as a trip to Wembley.

With both Manchester clubs drawn to face each other in the first semi-final, Stoke came up against the Trotters, with whom they were locked in a mid-table battle in the league at the time.

Stoke needed just over 10 minutes to open the scoring in their last-four clash as a poor clearance from Paul Robinson handed Matthew Etherington the ball on the edge of the box, leaving the winger to blast a powerful finish into the corner.

The lead was soon doubled when Gary Cahill tried to head the ball clear, but it only got as far as Robert Huth, leaving the defender to pick up a rare goal with a first-time hit past Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Pulis's side made it three on the half-hour mark when Jermaine Pennant took the ball off Martin Petrov before sliding it into the box for Kenwyne Jones, who was left to slot it home after Cahill failed to intercept the pass.

Jones was on the hunt for a second early in the second half as the Potters sensed a chance to run the score up, but Jaaskelainen denied the striker.

Jonathan Walters started to look dangerous going forward too, and he rifled home a fourth after making a solo run from midfield before blasting in a low finish from outside the box.

Stoke City fans celebrate their team winning at the final whistle during the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON semi final match between Bolton Wanderers and Stoke City at Wembley Stadium on April 17, 2011© Getty Images

Despite their comfortable winning margin, Stoke pushed forward again inside the final 10 minutes, and emphatically sealed the victory when Jones's cross was deflected into the path of Walters, leaving him to tap in for his second of the match.

Although Stoke were unable to replicate their free-scoring display against Man City a few weeks later, the victory did secure European football, as City's Champions League qualification left the Potters with the Europa League spot.

Stoke made it back to the quarter-finals the following season but were unable to secure another Wembley trip, and have not progressed beyond the fifth round since.

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Bolton's El hadji Diouf celebrates after scoring to make it 1-0 against Athletico Madrid during tonight's UEFA cup match at The Reebok Stadium in Bolton on February 14, 2008
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