Tomorrow, the Dingles come back into town. The last time we played Burnley at the Reebok, I announced to my friends that we ‘had our club back` after the torturous Megson era. Owen Coyle was going to be our saviour, and we were heading back to the good times.
I was wrong. We had a strong end to the season, followed by a fantastic three quarters of the next. But that was it. It wasn`t long before Owen Coyle was caught out as the largely flawed manager he is. Relegation, followed by a disastrous attempt at a promotion campaign, left Gartside no choice but to say goodbye to the cult hero.
Burnley fans might hate us for stealing their manager, but they should thank us for allowing him to leave their club in a better position than when he took over. We can hardly say that, can we?
We have a new man at the helm now. One who has overseen an improvement at the club, but one not reflected in the Championship table. Dougie Freedman told the club website:
“As a manager we have to approach this game same to any other. It will test our character and mental strength, but we are playing very well. We could do with a bit of fortune in terms of holding onto games and seeing matches out, and if we can do that then I can see us springboarding up the league. I think the fans have been terrific throughout my time here and they have seen us play some good football and just not get the result. I am frustrated for them but I think if we can get a couple of results then away we go. We are certainly not too far away.”
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Mark Davies, Keith Andrews, Matt Mills and David Wheater are still out. Whilst Holden is doubtful, I have a feeling we`ll see Stu play at some point.
Player to watch: Chris Eagles
It`s a big game for the Ronaldo of the Championship against his former club. His performances have dropped significantly in the past few weeks. Whether this is due to burnout, a change in style since the managerial change, the absence of certain players that compliment him, or a combination; he cannot have many poor games left before he is told to swap his training kit for a suit and a seat in the stands.
Burnley Team News:
Michael Duff (who?) may be out, but Burnley have most of their big guns at their disposal.
Player to watch: Junior Stanislas
Vital Burnley have gone for this guy. To quote them; “He can though be an exciting player to watch when charging forward and crossing the ball over from the flanks. He could be key to our chances of victory this Saturday.”
Match Facts & Stats
Burnley fans have on average 3.7 more digits than Bolton fans. The figure would be closer to 4, but the knuckle dragging than occurs in Royston Vasey leads to a dangerously high amount of finger loss.
We`ll win this. 3-0.
If you see anything like these below, stay completely still. Their vision works on movement.