It`s the Christmas period now, and whether you love it, tolerate it, or just try to merely survive it, it does mean there`s a lot of football, with Bolton about to play four games in the space of nine days, and it`s a difficult run too. The first of those is this Saturday, as Neil Warnock`s High Flying Bluebirds (a fantastic name for a band) are our visitors. And remember, don`t forget to turn up, otherwise Santa Ken won`t be bringing us any presents (or signings).
“Finishing is always key, we have to be clinical, make the goalkeepers work more and believe we`ve got more quality in and around that final third than we`ve shown last weekend. We have to get that ruthless edge about us when we get chances because at this level chances are far and few between, you`re not going to cut teams to ribbons time and time again.”
Phil Parkinson in the Bolton News. He also says we`ve got lots of technical ability in the team. Err?
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Mark Little could be back after a back injury suffered at Forest kept him out last week. It will be interesting to see whether Parkinson makes a few changes with the busy schedule about to be embarked upon.
Player to watch: Sammy Ameobi
Yeah, let`s pick him again. Ameobi has a date against a former club tomorrow, after a loan spell in South Wales during the 2015-16 season, only managing 11 starts which then-manager Russell Slade blamed on an asthma problem.
Cardiff City Team News:
Kadeem Harris, Rhys Healey, Aron Gunnarsson and Craig Bryson have all had injury problems and Saturday`s game could come too soon.
Player to watch: Junior Hoilett
Once a Premier League player with Blackburn and QPR, he managed to get relegated from the top flight in consecutive seasons with those two clubs. At this rate though, he could be about to return to the big time, six goals and five assists for the Canadian. Sky`s “Power Rankings” (whatever they are) recently ranked him as the fourth best player in the Championship, behind teammate Sol Bamba, Millwall`s George Saville and Wolves` Diogo Jota.
Match Facts & Stats
Bolton have lost their last two home games against Cardiff, a 3-2 defeat in the league in 2015, and an FA Cup fourth round tie in 2014. We did win the encounter before that, a 2-1 win in 2012, Dougie Freedman`s first league game as manager.
Neil Warnock has never won a game at the Macron, his last attempt was as Rotherham manager two seasons ago when Kaiyne Woolery scored a late winner as Bolton triumphed 2-1.
Bolton have lost one, won two and drawn two of their last five home games, which is exactly what Cardiff have done away from home.
I`ll go for a draw here. This Christmas will throw up some odd results and it`ll be difficult to predict, but hopefully we can respond to a poor result like we did against Wolves and the Warnock curse continues. Cardiff will rightly be favourites though. 1-1.
Two difficult away games, actually all away games are difficult, but it`s Boro on Boxing Day with Sheffield United next Saturday.