We don’t like them, they brush it off. Stretford Rangers, their byelaw flouting, much travelled (from Kent) supporters and their mix of over extending OAP’s, expensive signings and tabloid fodder strikers come to T’Reebok for a kick off that has been moved to midday for reasons that Stephen Hawking will have trouble figuring out.
‘I wasn`t aware prior to coming to Bolton Wanderers as a player that the rivalry goes way back but I remember in my time here we had a reserve game against United that was watched by something like 14,000 people.’ St Owen would like to take you way, way back.
‘Adam has done terrifically but, of course, we now have one of the best goalkeepers in the entire Premier League available to us.’ He then makes out like he is mulling over a no brainer.
‘I can`t change the way I play at 33. I always try and win the ball fairly but sometimes, with the speed of the game and maybe I`m getting slower, these challenges happen.’ SuperKev looks Rio and Vidic in the eye. And doesn’t blink.
‘We always regard Bolton as a local derby, and derbies are always going to be special in supporters’ minds. We expect it to be tough, it’s always tough there. The big lad up front, Kevin Davies, is a handful. We’ve dealt with it in the past and we have to deal with it again on Sunday.’ The Whisky Guzzling Madman of Carrington forgets how they didn’t deal with the big man up front in 2001. And 2002.
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Jussi is available after suspension and will replace Shaggy, who has performed well for the past three and a half games, but anyone who thinks otherwise needs to seriously start thinking about watching a new sort of sport.
AOB will be out for ‘four to six weeks’ so Sam Ricketts stays in central defence as Gary ‘Gaz’ Cahill serves the last match of his three game ban.
SuperKevinDavies is available after sitting out his ban on Wednesday. No other worries for the first choice line up.
Player to watch: Martin Petrov
Finally seemed to be finding his Bolton legs in last weekend’s draw at Villa Park. As a former Citeh player, he will understand the need to get one over on the enemy from Trafford and will be a major outlet for all the attacking play that Bolton can muster.
Manchester United Team News:
After Wednesday’s eventual removal of Scunny in the Carling Cup, TWGMOC will be making more sweeping changes. A normally reliable defence has let in more goals that United are used to conceding, and Fergie time ones at that. Expect Rio Ferdinand to return in central defence to partner Vidic but the players that Ferguson picks, barring probably Van De Sar, Rooney and Berbatov, will be done whilst keeping one eye on Wednesday’s Champions League tie in Valencia.
Player to watch: Dimitar Berbatov
In a myriad of stars, and even as a Bolton fan you can’t deny they’ve got some good players, the renaissance of The Surly Bulgarian has been nothing short of a surprise so big Cilla Black couldn’t make it up. His hat trick last weekend against the Scousers was a joy, the overhead kick something that even Mrs X said was ‘OK’. Six goals in five games tell their own story.
Match Facts & Stats
In the last seven seasons, Bolton have drawn one and won one. Otherwise it has been United, United, United, scoring four goals five times.
Good reading it is not.
The two teams have played each other many times over the centuries, United holding a 51-42 advantage. At Burnden/Reebok, Bolton have won twenty five to United’s eighteen with fourteen draws.
The great Sir Nat is Bolton’s leading scorer in the fixture his twelve league goals being added to by two certain FA Cup Final efforts.
Phil Dowd has been a busy boy so far this season, refereeing every weekend. Two red cards, Song of Arsenal for tackling someone twice and getting Mr Vinegar all hot, bothered and assaulty and Berra of Wolves, and twenty eight yellows means his card showing arm is getting a bit overused.
His last Bolton game was the 1-1 FA Cup draw against Spurs back in February when he showed two yellow cards out of five to Bolton players.
His fourth official was Mr Fusterfart, but after missing Iwelumo’s handball on Tuesday and St Owen having a word, he has been ‘removed’. Chris Foy is his replacement.
Now, I know I’ve said this before but my water is telling me that this will be a 2-0 Bolton win. And I always trust the water. And so should you.
West Brom, who have just beaten The Arse at The Emirates, for T’Trotters before the international break.