Vital Football

Latest Bolton Wanderers News

Pick 'N' Mix

Pick 'N' Mix
So, we have our first point of the season- a 2-2 draw with Nottingham Forest. Sir Douglas had the team playing in a 4-4-2 diamond formation with Craig Davies and Joe Mason up top.

I've always thought, if we got Mason and didn't get Jutkiewicz back, that this would be our best solution. We played our best football of last year with the strong, imposing Middlesborough loanee alongside the young, nippy Cardiff loanee. Having lost out on the Juke to Burnley we have to think of new strike combinations. Our most similar player to Jutkiewicz is Craig Davies. He's 6 ft 2 thus tall enough to dominate in the air. He's our strongest player and he's not bad on the ball. During his rather disappointing time so far at Bolton we've seen several decent long range strikes with both his right and left foot. If Wheater, Mills and Dervite decide to keep hoofing the ball they'll at least have a competent target with Davies. Having one bigger striker and one who's better at finishing isn't exactly new to Bolton- Kevin Davies and Nicolas Anelka were one of our most successful pairings in recent years.

Before the arrival of Mason people were suggesting a partnership of Jermaine Beckford and Craig Davies with Connor Wilkinson and/or Zach Clough on the bench. This, in theory, should work similarly to the Davies-Mason pairing. However it just doesn't seem to. Beckford's runs don't seem to overlap with Davies' flick ons nor is he ever in quite the right position to receive the ball from Davies. I hate to say but Mason, while by no means the best striker in the division, just offers so much more than Beckford.

Jermaine Beckford picked up a few injuries which coincided with Mason's loan spells last season so we didn't see an awful lot of them together. However, I think an obvious problem is a lack of aerial threat. While neither of them are tiny, they're just not great in the air. I know Dougie's philosophy is based around playing short passes from the back through to the midfielder etc... but the reality is that it just doesn't happen enough to justify having two 'poacher' style strikers. Also wingers such as Feeney like to pump balls into the box and our chances of getting onto the end of these crosses is much lower without the presence of someone taller.

Should Dougie choose to play with only one up front, my first choice would be Craig Davies. While he's not a brilliant striker, he can miss easy chances and doesn't quite have the finishing as most strikers in this division- he's the best we've got for now in this position. The others just don't have the physical presence to handle playing on their own.

If Davies were injured and we had to play one of Beckford or Mason on their own it would be Beckford for me. I have glossed over Beckford's flaws but the fact of the matter is that Mason cannot play as a lone striker. We saw this in his first loan spell in which he scored once in eight matches. Beckford can just about play on his own, although his finishing has been poor his runs are more suited to making space for a through ball rather than for taking a knock down from another striker.

Young Connor Wilkinson and Zach Clough may get a few games this season. Wilkinson's tall and apparently quite strong in the air and is good with the ball. Zach Clough seems to fit the Joe Mason mould as a good finisher who's runs are more suited to playing alongside another striker.

Who would you like to see start up front?
Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football

Writer:Nicky Crompton
Date:Sunday August 17 2014
Time: 12:59PM

Best of Vital Network

Vital Boxing - Dan Blackwell Retires

Comments

0
I'd like to see Mason partner Wilkinson. In a sea of disappointing performances against Bury, I thought Wilkinson was excellent.
robmoss2k
18/08/2014 10:21:00
0
I agree Nicky, Davies and Mason for me. Davies really was excellent on Saturday winning nearly every ball that came his way and holding it up well too. I think Mason is the ideal partner at the moment and I would like to see Feeney play as he may gamble more going forward and pick up one of the knock downs from Davies. I think we need to go back to ugly route one football and with Davies up front it may just work.
Boltongav
19/08/2014 13:06:00
0
I agree that we probably have to start playing uglier football, but I still thought that Wilkinson was better against Bury than Davies was against Forest - even though Davies was excellent against Forest.
robmoss2k
19/08/2014 13:35:00
0
There are a number of superlatives flying about. Let's not get carried away or confuse trying very hard but with limited ability. Rob, if Davies had been excellent against Forest, he would have buried that header. Instead, he showed what he is, a good trier, a league 1 or 2 player at best. It may be interesting to see how Wilkinson and Mason get on together, but again one suspects it's a bit too early for that! I'm afraid, we need much better quality up front, to compete with the big boys.
Barney Grumble
19/08/2014 17:29:00
0
Davies was excellent - it's Mason's job to score the goals, though. Davies is there to cause the chaos to make the space for Mason, which he's done for both the past two games to great effect now, although Mason didn't take much advantage against Boro.
robmoss2k
20/08/2014 12:04:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Bolton Wanderers Articles

Who Will Bolton Face In 2016/17 (26/4/16)

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 Denied By Late Penalty At Cardiff

Bolton fell to a very late defeat, conceeding a 93rd minute Peter Whittingham penalty at the Cardiff City Stadium, in a game which they for the most part had to play with ten men.

Early on Emile Heskey, who has started the last three games, was brough down by Lee Peltier. The free kick was given.

From that set-piece Bolton then went into a lead away for home for the first time since October when Zach Clough curled it into the top corner to make the 270 or so travelling Wanderers fa

Stats: Cardiff City v Bolton Wanderers

All the stats from Cardiff City (2) vs (1) Bolton Wanderers, Cardiff City Stadium, 23 April Att: 24,189

Preview: Cardiff Away

Bolton travel abroad for their penultimate away game of the season. Well, Wales anyway.

Cardiff have marginally more to play for. They have an outside chance of making the playoffs but defeat o

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)

Will you have a season ticket next term?
Suggested By:
I'm renewing mine50%
Not renewing0%
Didn't have one before but now I will!0%
Didn't have one. Still won't50%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Burnley 44 24 15 5 87 33
2 Middlesbrough 44 26 9 9 87 32
3 Brighton 44 24 15 5 87 30
4 Hull City 44 23 11 10 80 31
5 Derby County 44 21 14 9 77 24
6 Sheff Wed 44 18 17 9 71 19
7 Cardiff 44 17 16 11 67 8
8 Ipswich 44 16 15 13 63 0
9 Birmingham 44 16 13 15 61 4
10 Brentford 44 17 8 19 59 -2
11 Preston 44 14 16 14 58 -1
12 Leeds Utd 44 14 16 14 58 -7
13 Q.P.R. 44 13 18 13 57 0
14 Wolves 44 13 15 16 54 -6
15 Reading 44 13 13 18 52 -4
16 Huddersfield 44 13 12 19 51 -3
17 Forest 44 12 15 17 51 -5
18 Blackburn 44 11 16 17 49 -3
19 Rotherham 44 13 10 21 49 -13
20 Bristol City 44 12 13 19 49 -20
21 Fulham 44 11 15 18 48 -11
R MK Dons 44 9 12 23 39 -28
R Charlton 44 8 13 23 37 -38
R Bolton 44 4 15 25 27 -40
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News

Recent Bolton Wanderers Results (view all)

Bolton Wanderers Fixtures (view all)

Apr 30 2016 12:30PM : Hull City (H)
Sky Bet Championship
May 7 2016 12:30PM : Fulham (a)
Sky Bet Championship

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.Barney Grumble14
2.FredMadagascar7
3.El Cynico7
4.Vital Bolton6
5.Prebondary2
6.bwfc18741
7.bevers241