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Bolton Wanderers: It All Comes Down To This



Afternoon to you all. Here we are again, the day after a game that could have been, and should have been, but ended up being a never been.

Here are some things I learnt whilst not watching any of last night's game:

We tore Leeds a new one for half an hour, but have heard that tune before and it rarely results in a win. SKD scored two, but did nothing for the rest of the game, relying on two pin point crosses to avoid not missing. This will, therefore, give him a run of five starts whilst the best finisher at the club sits on the bench tweeting. If we are to play a side with width, best to play wingers. Dioufy? Captain? Who knew Neil Warnock was that much of a comedian? Michael Brown shouldn't be playing even Sunday League. Leeds fans have good banter. We could have lost. By the law of averages, some of these decisions that the referees are making that are costing us have to be right. Good crowd for a Tuesday night. Benik Afobe plays like he has a bowling ball in his stomach. Stephen Warnock is a good signing. If you are going to substitute someone for Martin Petrov, why Jay Spearing. Owen Coyle has one game left.

That last one may not be true, but it is the feeling you get looking around tweets and message boards this morning. Another game that has passed us by and, whilst we have climbed a whole on position, Forest could quite easily send us back a place against a rudderless Blackburn tonight. It is plain to see that whatever OC is doing, it isn't quite working. While we played well in the first half, as it wore on and we hadn't scored, the sense that something was going to happen up the other end grew more and more. We have, after all, not kept a clean sheet since Herbert Braithwaite kept goal in 1878. Or thereabouts.

There was a time, not so very long ago, when you could almost guarantee that the away side at The Reebok wouldn't get a goal. Now you can almost get over 20-1 on Bolton keeping a clean sheet. Yesterday was no different and, all joking aside about half time team talks, it was no great shock when Leeds scored again within five minutes of the restart. This joke about half time isn't funny anymore. It is bloody serious. It beggars belief how many times teams have been able to score between the forty fifth and fiftieth minute in the past eighteen months. And it shows no signs of abating.

Inwardly, OC may be looking to blame outside forces, penalties that aren't and penalties that are but aren't. But there is still no excuse to find ourselves where we are, now closer to relegation than the play offs. Defeat, or even a draw, at Millwall could well see him off. And for that, he only has himself to blame.
The Journalist

Writer: Quentin X Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday October 3 2012

Time: 3:10PM

Your Comments

No really! It's all the referees fault, we're a brilliant side and we're going to win the league at a canter, we're in a false position, if it wasn't for the refereeing we'd be top of the league! Sigh.
robmoss2k
Anyone else beginning to think that you can write OC's post match interview for him before kick off? Or maybe without even seeing the game?
Back of the Net
Looking back at previous posts and reading this one it seems most Wanderers think its just a defensive problem .... look at these stats ( http://www.leeds.vitalfootball.co.uk/stats.asp?a=295363 ) and you do have a point there but any defence keeping our lads from even having a crack at goal cant be all that bad (2 goals but 3 shots on target for Leeds last night) it looks to me like ur a bit limp up front
simonfire1
I actually might start a bingo for Coyles most repeted phrases... Same old story Coyle.
youngwanderer
5 home points dropped inside a few days, absolutely disasterous given these are essential points for any team who hope to climb the table, we are 17th and deserving of nothing else, it could get alot worse before this month is out - the next 4 games have us playing away to Millwall, Wolves & Middlesborough, with Bristol City sandwiched in at home, while anything can happen in football our away form is worse than our home form so no one has grounds for optimism. If we only take 3 or 4 points from these games we end up with circa 15 points from 13 games, literally a third of the season will be gone and we are staring at a relegation battle - forget promotion. Gartside has run out of time, he must act now, the choice is simple - the interests and future of this club or Coyle, he cannot let more games slip by - the last 9 games have shown Coyles team up for what it is, the odd win only serves to inflict greater damage. Gartside has sacrificed everything on Coyle and lost, only a damn fool refuses to see the truth. I said at the start of the season Coyle would probably get 10 games, I hope for the future of our great club he does not get anything more.
aussie mike
If you look back at our previous few matches, how many more points could have been saved if we did not give away any penalties? Okay most of the decisions have been questionable, but these would be even more likely to be awarded in the prem. Other than defensivley i don't think we are too bad at the moment, also why not give Lonergan a start to make sure there is competition for GK
bwfc58
Is Megson still available?...... Juz kidding, but seriously, it's time to make a change. Problem is, Coyle won't step aside and Gartside's got no huevos...
swedebwfc
O.C. is a good man but lost control of events more than a year ago. Garside is silent (plotting the assassination ?or just fiddling while Reebok burns ?) and The Millwall result should not matter . Thank you O.C.and best wishes in your next job.
norjoy
10 games at the start of any season is a sufficient period to generally decide on how that season will develop. Even accounting for the effects of relegation, it is a reasonable period to form judgement. Stat's don't lie, even with a win on Saturday, we are way off any sensible promotion targets, including our very own Chairman & Manager's "average 2pts per game". Take into account the quality of the opposition in these 10 games, not one realistic promotion contender. Only 1 clean sheet, a negative goal difference and not even taking into account the actual performances, can only point to another season of failure. The PR rubbish spouted by the chairman, manager and players is an insult to anyone with the slightest bit of intelligence, just like it was with the previous manager. Both Coyle and Gartside have been responsible for taking our club back 20 years, the spirit of the club and the majority of supporters has been drained away. Unless action is taken by Mr Davies to remove both chairman and manager within the next 14 days, then the future for our beloved club will be bleak the next 20 years!!!
Wintwanderer
Battered us for half hour and then we could have won. I was happy getting in at one down, so to go in level must have been a right kick in the teeth for you. Eagles scared the life out of us in the first half and the big difference was when you brought on Martin Petrov. Got to admit, enjoyed the night but getting out of your car park is a nightmare. We didn't move until 11pm
dazza71
Gonna kick off with a stat 5 CLEAN SHEETS IN 60 LEAGUE GAMES thats 1 in 12 thats relagation from the premier league and mid Table in the championship....Like Coyle...the kind of guy you want to go to the pub with have a drink...Although he's T total...However starting to lose faith in him but more importantly the team behind him Sandy Stewart et al..never see them get off the bench...they just sit there one with a note pad the other with a scour...The under 21 squad seems to lose as regularly as the first team..only David Lee and Tony Kelly seem to be bringing success to the Club..If Coyle is to stay he needs a strong Number 2...Harry redknapp had Joe Jordon...Morinho Steve clark etc etc perhaps Sammy lee needs to step up...just a thought...
lewis265
Compare and contrast the gumph we get fed v Mancini on City's performance last night : "We didnt play well and we conceded a lot of chances again. I am really disappointed in our performance. and on their poor defensive performance..... "I know the problem and I will solve [it] very quickly, he said. Its my problem, its my job to sort this. A bit of intellectual honesty supported by actions rather than copy paste statements in week in week out would be welcome here in Chicory land
ChicoryCoffee
Wintwanderer has summed up exactly how we all feel, unbiased observers might argue we are adopting a herd mentality in chanting for Coyles head, they might say the current gap with those teams at the top could be closed inside a month or two, maybe this is true, so should we reconsider our current mindset ? The facts show that under Coyle's management the team has been in constant decline , with no evidence from the 9 games so far to suggest Coyle is capable or able to reverse that decline. Every team can go through highs and lows and the best of managers can stumble, but this is not a temporary blip, we have witnessed constant systematic failure that has stripped our team of ability and capability, it is now a shadow of its former self. The club needs a manager who can light a fire, adding the sparks needed to lift team performance and turn us into promotion contenders. Coyle has proved he is not the man.
aussie mike
I loved OC as a player & he seems to be decent man. Unfortunately, as manager of Bolton Wanderers it has simply not worked out. Here are some more stats for you all: OC's record - P125 W42 D24 L59 Win% 33.6%. Current target of 2 points per game = 66% win percentage (and current ppg ratio is 1.2 or about half what is needed on both calculations). In all league games played under OC we have kept 12 clean sheets out of 105 games; an average of just 1 cs every 9 games (almost). I know stats can be used to prove whatever you want but none of this gives me much cause to be optimistic that OC is the man to rescue us from oblivion. All the comments above from Mike, Wint, Lewis, Chicory et al echo the same sentiment. Call us a bunch of whingers but OC really has had plenty of time to put his stamp on the club. In 2006/7 we finished 7th in PL and got to last 16 of Europa League; now we are 18th in division 2. And as I have said before I do not want to watch the Whites at Wrexham ever again. I dont know if our players are a particularly dim bunch who play well for 20 or 30 minutes then simply forget what the plan was and revert to a shambolic rabble, or whether the manager & coaches cant communicate the plan; whatever the truth, Mike (aged sage of Vital Bolton) had it right all along. I believe I may have a small wager on Millwall being OC's final game. So long and thanks for all the fish.
FredMadagascar
Forgot to say...totally agree with Chicory about honesty. If we play cr*p then why does OC always say we were the better team, there are lots of positives, et, etc. Just bloody tell it like it is and dont insult the public's intelligence. God knows the players need a good kick up the arse.
FredMadagascar
It's right what you say, FredMad, that O.C's positive spin on ****e performances insults our intelligence, but I also think this is one of the main reasons Coyle has lost his dressing room. Footballers aren't the brightest bulbs but they know when they've had a 'mare. So when they come off the pitch and they've played cr4p and hear their leader & motivator bigging them up it psychologically justifies and condones their underachievement. Thus, the poor performances are self-preserved indefinitely until the needle is lifted from the broken record. I know what Coyle's trying to do but can you imagine Ferguson condoning what we've put up with? 90% of our players wouldn't be at the club now nevermind in the team! Coyle is largely to blame for this 'motivational' strategy, obviously, but where are his advisers, coaches, sports psychologists etc. to at least give the man a hand? It's a complete Muppet Show, not just a one-man-farce...
bwfc75
Oh, and this DVD that Coyle's compiled containing all the 'video nasty' things that have happened to us this season must just be the out-takes. Surely the 9 DVD box-set is our performances! 'The Turf Moor Chainsaw Massacre' is an 18 cert and should be banned!
bwfc75
I should mention the November fixture list - we face all the better teams in quick succession - it certainly appears to be the defining period when our season will either be made or broken, I suspect Gartside will be well aware of this. We either enter that period in confident fashion, on the back of a remarkable turnaround in fortunes for Coyle or with a new manager at the helm - make no bones about it November should be the springboard when we stamp our authority on this league and put the ' better class' opposition to the sword. If the current situation remains unchanged and we continue our poor form throughout this month we could be hammered during November from which we may never recover. Coyle either gets an urgent visit from his fairy godmother and things suddenly change for the better as from this weekend, or he gets his P45.
aussie mike
Some great comments here. Club has lost its spirit . . . . constant decline are just two. Coyle's record is a nightmare but we all know the problem goes deeper. 10 games is enough, just heard we're losing at Millwall . . .
adlington2
Totally agree the comments from us all sum up the fans feeling & our "informed" opinions. I for one am a fully informed football intelligent supporter and now the result is known from Millwall after my earlier comments above 10 games played, 11 from 30pts, 1 clean sheet and now a -3 goal difference, can only mean "Goodbye Owen, you tried your best, you gave it your all - but you failed because your best is not good enough" Now lets find a manager to get us out of this dark bleak hole of the Championship, before we find the exit door closed for years!
Wintwanderer
 

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