Bolton opened their run of pre-season friendlies with a 3-3 draw at Atherton Colls.
And so, on the pitch, the Phil Parkinson era was underway. Or actually, it wasn’t.
This was officially the senior team’s first pre-season friendly of the 2016-17 campaign, but in reality it wasn’t really the case.
I feel a little bit of sympathy for Atherton Colls. A non-league side who get a lot of Wanderers fans coming through their gates, they were doubtless looking forward to and hoping to see a number of senior players grace the pitch at Alder House, especially when they published the squad lists during the week.
On the day though, it was very much a youthful Trotters side that appeared. In fact, Parkinson technically didn’t take control of the team on the day, leaving matchday duties to David Lee.
Parkinson did appear on the terraces among the fans, along with Derik and Zach Clough, and possibly others.
On the pitch, it was left to the younger guns. Three trailists, who we told you about during the week, Jarvis Nutt, Constantin Sandu and Jonathan Kindermans, all featured. Out of the starting lineup, only Alex Samizadeh experienced first team football last term.
In the end, those who paid got goals and value for money. Samizadeh scored Bolton’s first after the visitors went 2-0 down.
It was suggested Sandu struggled with the physical side of things, but a volley to level things up suggests he has some sort of talent, possibly enough that Juventus took him into the Stabia. Or Academy for the non-hipsters.
Bolton went behind again before Ronaldo Pearson scored to ensure the match ended up in a 3-3 draw.
Tonight the first team squad flew out to Denmark. They will train just over the bridge and border in the Swedish city of Malmo, before heading back to Denmark to play Helsingor next Saturday.
We then might see the start of the Parky era on the pitch.