Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Sunday February 14 2010
Wednesday will see neighbours Bolton Wanderers coming to the DW Stadium to face Wigan Athletic in a re-arranged fixture from back in December when the paths and roads in and around Wigan were that slippy that the game had to be postponed for the safety of the spectators.
Now two months later the snow and ice have melted away, though there is talk of more on the way, but it is the safety of both clubs who find themselves on the slippy slope out of the Premier League with relegation a major fear.
Bolton sit next to the bottom of the table and are in desperate trouble, talisman Gary Cahill looks set to be out of action for quite a while with a blood clot in his arm and he will be missed for the Trotters at both ends of the pitch
The central defender has been in excellent form this season indeed he is Bolton`s leading goal scorer with 7 goals in all competitions and there have been cries for his inclusion in the England squad, he will be severely missed.
Second on that Bolton goal scoring list is Ivan Klasnic the Croatia international forward, he too is out after suffering an ankle and calf injury in the game against Burnley, when your luck is down it is down.
Bolton changed managers recently to try and change their luck, out went the uncharismatic Gary Megson, at one time the Bolton fans called him the ginger Mourinho, at the end of his reign they just referred to him as the ginger t…, we`ll leave it there, and in came ex-Bolton player and Burnley boss Owen Coyle, but a change of manager hasn`t brought them a change of fortune on the pitch.
Since Coyle came in the Wanderers have won one, drawn one and lost four Premier League games, form that wasn`t too dissimilar to that under Megson.
So Bolton are struggling to find any form they have lost their two leading goal scorers and in Gary Cahill their inspirational leader, this is not only worrying for them as they prepare to face the Latics but also for the next 14 games of what is turning into a desperate season for the men from Horwich.
Roberto Martinez will have rested his squad this weekend, Bolton have an FA cup game against Spurs today (Sunday), Wednesday could see the fresh and fit (Latics) face the tired and depleted (Bolton) I just hope that the Latics are up for it and battle for the full 90 minutes this week instead of fading in the last third ala Sunderland and Stoke.
This is our game in hand on those teams that sit around us in the table; a win would lift us above Sunderland and up to 13th spot and push Bolton further in to trouble at the foot, I am not contemplating any other result for it is too easy to get dragged into panic mode and that is definitely not required.
Lets hope the melting of the ice and the onset of Spring brings new life into the Latics and keeps us going until the end of the games and stops the club from slipping into the bottom three
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Date:Sunday February 14 2010
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