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.