Vital Football

Latest Bolton Wanderers News

Welcome to our Nightmare - Season Review 07/08

Welcome to our Nightmare - Season Review 07/08

Three different managers in a year. Two influential central defenders leave. Other players are past their sell by date. Several new signings don`t make the grade. A crushing defeat in the first game of the season. Of such things, relegation is made. As the 2007-8 season finally draws to a close, Bolton Wanderers can consider themselves fortunate to still have Premier League status.

Many predicted relegation for the Reebok outfit, including the usual selection of so called experts. Bolton couldn`t possibly survive without Sam Allardyce, right? Some of the 'fans` were no better. 'Eight years to build, eight months to destroy`, was the mantra of the educationally sub-normal chavs who gathered outside the Reebok in a bid to oust Gary Megson. The truth was that Bolton`s problems started way before Allardyce left. In the last five months of the previous season his side won only four times in the league, and were conceding an average of two goals a game, a damning statistic for a man with his clean sheet mentality. The players looked dispirited, unfit and unmotivated. Whoever took over had a sizeable rebuilding task to do.

That man turned out to be Sammy Lee. Lee said things that the supporters wanted to hear. They were bored of Allardyce`s style of play. When criticisms of Bolton`s long ball game were first made they were inaccurate and unfair and usually spouted by cry-baby managers and opposition fans, unable to accept defeat gracefully. Now they were valid. Allardyce had retreated into a hoof and hope game that was neither effective or pleasing to watch. Lee`s promise of change was welcomed.

The optimism didn`t last long. Twenty-seven minutes to be precise. For that was all it took for Newcastle, Allardyce`s new club, to forge a three-goal lead in the opening game of the season. Not that the Magpies played well, they were merely fortunate recipients of comic book defending.

From then on Lee was doomed. He wasn`t deserving of the sheer spite that came in his direction, but the little man made too many mistakes. The most crucial, as far as his own career was concerned, was the failure to distance himself from the players. A manager needs a certain detachment, Lee still wanted act like a coach.

The defence and defensive midfield were also problematic. Tal Ben Haim had quit the club and Abdoulaye Faye was always going to follow Big Sam to Newcastle. Abdoulaye Meite was still there, but playing badly and Gerald Cid, an Allardyce signing from Bordeaux was a disaster. One can only assume that Bolton`s scouts had been sampling the delights of that region`s vineyards when they recommended him. The midfield which used to protect the back four so well, was now immobile and easy to play through.

Most damaging were the rumours of mutiny that continued to filter from the training ground. Plenty claim to know what went on, few do. The only direct account comes from Kevin Nolan who met with Lee after he was dropped for the game against Chelsea.

"I said: 'What's happening?'" Nolan told the Independent. "He said: 'You come on and tell me what's up.' I said: 'What do you mean, 'what's up?' I'm gutted I wasn't playing.' He said: 'I don't think you were gutted enough.' I said: 'I was.' It just went back and fro, like that."

That match was Lee`s last in charge, despite the last six games of his reign yielding two wins, three draws and only one defeat. Once more, the Wanderers were looking for a new leader.

continues tomorrow

Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football

Writer:Richard McCormick
Date:Tuesday May 27 2008
Time: 12:33PM

Comments

0
Poor old sammy, i never though he'd be up to it anyway, sadly. not all people can be good coaches and good managers.
C T E
29/05/2008 04:02:00
0
It wasn't to bad a season was it? You managed to stay up and had some great European results.
dazza71
04/06/2008 19:45:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Bolton Wanderers Articles

Vital Co-Owner to Climb Ben Nevis

Jonathan Fear is to climb Ben Nevis. Help him out.

Who Will Bolton Face In 2016/17 (3/5/16)

With less than a handful of games remaining in the 2015/16 campaign, some promotions and relegations in the football pyramid are already known.

Bolton Player of the Month: April

Choose your Player of the Month on our poll

Bolton Sign Off At Home With Win

Bolton won their final home game of the season yesterday as Stephen Dobbie's second half goal gave Wanderers a victory over playoff-bound Hull City.

The Whites' big chance of the first half fell to Darren Pratley, who was just six yards from goal but still managed to find himself being denied by goalkeeper Eldin Jakupovic, before Zach Clough's effort was blocked.

The captain then did himself few favours farcically going over in the penalty area when anyone could see he hadn't been

Archived Vital Bolton Articles

Vital Bolton articles from

Site Journalists

Anthony Hart
Editor email
Profile
Tom Bevington
no email
Profile
Tom Jenkins
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

April Player of the Month?
Suggested By:
Ben Amos46%
David Wheater18%
Derik29%
Zach Clough7%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Burnley 45 25 15 5 90 34
2 Middlesbrough 45 26 10 9 88 32
3 Brighton 45 24 16 5 88 30
4 Hull City 45 23 11 11 80 30
5 Derby County 45 21 15 9 78 24
6 Sheff Wed 45 19 17 9 74 22
7 Cardiff 45 17 16 12 67 5
8 Ipswich 45 17 15 13 66 1
9 Birmingham 45 16 14 15 62 4
10 Brentford 45 18 8 19 62 1
11 Preston 45 15 16 14 61 0
12 Leeds Utd 45 14 16 15 58 -8
13 Q.P.R. 45 13 18 14 57 -1
14 Wolves 45 13 16 16 55 -6
15 Blackburn 45 12 16 17 52 -2
16 Reading 45 13 13 19 52 -5
17 Forest 45 12 16 17 52 -5
18 Bristol City 45 13 13 19 52 -16
19 Huddersfield 45 13 12 20 51 -7
20 Rotherham 45 13 10 22 49 -14
21 Fulham 45 11 15 19 48 -14
R Charlton 45 9 13 23 40 -37
R MK Dons 45 9 12 24 39 -29
R Bolton 45 5 15 25 30 -39
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Bolton Wanderers Results (view all)

Bolton Wanderers Fixtures (view all)

May 7 2016 12:30PM : Fulham (a)
Sky Bet Championship

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.Barney Grumble4
2.Vital Bolton4
3.El Cynico3
4.FredMadagascar1
5.bevers241