Maybe life without Gary Madine won`t be so bad. It was very promising result last weekend for Bolton, and there was some more good news during the week when debts were paid off to get HMRC off our backs. It`s back to the football for now then, and back to the Macron, where a tough test awaits against free-scoring Fulham.
“We need to get in their faces from the first minute, not allow them to stroke it around, get our tackles in and ruffle a few feathers – we know we have got some quality to nick us that goal.”
Mark Beevers in the Bolton News.
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Stephen Darby suffered a head injury in training yesterday. He, Aaron Wilbraham, Will Buckley and Reece Burke are all set to be missing. I`m not sure whether Darren Pratley is ready to return.
Player to watch: Sammy Ameobi
After last week`s performance, he might have to be the one which leads the team in the last three months of the season – he`s also harbouring hopes of getting into the Nigerian squad for the World Cup (and wearing THAT kit) so he has something to achieve there in addition to our survival.
Fulham Team News:
Slavisa Jokanovic will make a decision on the fitness of Tom Cairney today – the midfielder has missed recent games due to a knee problem.
Player to watch: Ryan Sessegnon
He was kept quiet when we played these lot at Craven Cottage back in October – but Fulham, and himself, have kicked on of late and the young full-back has bagged a double of Championship Player of the Month awards for January, having won both the PFA and EFL awards.
Match Facts & Stats
The reverse fixture saw us draw 1-1 in West London. Sammy Ameobi put us ahead, and we were within minutes of a first away win of the season. But Fulham`s dominance wore us down and Tom Cairney eventually equalised deep into injury time.
Our last meeting at the Macron was in December 2015. Again, it was a case of nearly but not quite. Zach Clough`s double had turned the game on it`s head after Luke Garbutt had put us behind, but Ross McCormack scored a late equaliser.
Our last win over Fulham was in February 2015, when Saidy Janko scored a rocket in 3-1 win.
Fulham are looking for a sixth successive league win, while Bolton have won three of their last six in the Championship.
Fulham have the highest average possession in the league (58.6%) while Bolton are second bottom of the league in that respect (41.6%)
This will be a tough game – Fulham are playing well, they will score at some point and we seem to find wins against them hard to come by. On the other hand, let`s not underestimate how hard we are to beat at home. I shall predict a 1-1 draw.
Two away games in the space of a week. We start by paying Madine a visit on Tuesday in Cardiff, then a trip to QPR next Saturday