Three games into the Championship, and in a tough start Bolton have yet to pick up a victory. But away draws in the last couple of games suggest that we might be adapting to the step-up in division. We`re back on home turf this Saturday, with another tricky game as we host Derby County. They too have been handed a tricky start, and have a win, draw and loss from their opening games. Maybe though, this is a game that we can get something from.
“We`re looking forward to getting back home, it`ll be good to be back after three away trips. We want to be back home and playing in the same manner we have done so far this season. It`s not a tactic for us to sit deep, it`s a tactic for us to be organised and structured.”
Phil Parkinson, speaking to the Bolton News
“It`ll be a similar game to Preston, in that Bolton have been playing three at the back. We might make a few tweaks to how we set up but we will need to be strong and organised, and make sure we`re compact when we don`t have the ball.”
Gary Rowett talking about us in his pre-match press conference this morning.
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Bolton have no new injury worries, so it`s a case of still missing David Wheater, Sammy Ameobi and Josh Vela.
It`s fair to guess that Phil Parkinson will name an unchanged side from Tuesday`s draw.
Player to watch: Gary Madine
Derby boss Rowett has already mentioned the need to be strong – in previous seasons that tendency to get bullied has been levelled against them. This could be a prime opportunity for Madine to be effective, he had the Leeds backline on toast, but maybe hasn`t been as able to torment defenders as much in the last two games, despite still winning Filipe Morais` free kick last weekend and having two chances to score midweek.
Derby County Team News:
Tom Lawrence joined from East Midlands rivals Leicester midweek and could be in line to replace Andreas Weimann to make his Rams debut. Craig Bryson and Matej Vydra both have injuries of sorts, Bryson is carrying one and could be a doubt, while Vydra is still returning to full fitness after returning to action on Tuesday.
Player to watch: Richard Keogh
Keogh is part of the furniture at Pride Park, having been there for five years now and is club captain. Two-time winner of the club`s Player of the Year award, the Irish international centre-back is fairly decent on the ball and has played fairly well this season, playing every minute of their Championship campaign so far.
Can he handle Big Gaz tomorrow though?
Match Facts & Stats
Bolton have won none of their last seven, and just one of their last eight matches against the Rams. This came in a 2-0 win in August 2012, which also was the last time Wanderers won a Championship game in August.
Bolton have lost all three games against Gary Rowett-managed teams, Rowett was taking charge of Birmingham City for all three.
Derby have drawn their one away game so far (1-1 at Sunderland), we lost our opening away game.
Two seasons ago was the last time we hosted the Rams, that was on the opening day of the season and the game finished in a goalless draw.
Bolton have scored more goals than Derby so far this season (3/2 in the league)
I can feel this. I think we`re ever so slightly growing into the season. Derby are a very good side who expect to be in the top six come May but might not quite be in full flow yet.
I think we`ll get our first win of the season. 2-1
We have a home tie in the Carabao Cup against Sheffield Wednesday on Tuesday, before switching back to the Championship with a trip to Hull next Friday.