Bolton Wanderers 0 - West Bromwich Albion 2
Brief summary: we were miles off our best but got over the line in the type of game that by winning you get promotion.
I think we’ve played better and drawn or lost this season.
I think we owe the points to an almost ready-made EPL quality back four and probably SJ’s best performance for us in terms of contributing to the points.
Elsewhere I thought the 4-3-3 gave us real problems with our lack of options and Bolton’s severe lack of quality helped us.
All that matters is the result but we need Phillips back and we need someone to replace Barnes.
Other subs not on long enough but Edwards looks like he might be a better option.
Broke Bolton v WBA
The game was about as poor as the protest. How many seconds did it take to clear all those 12 tennis balls?
We certainly seemed to miss the pace of Barnes and Phillips but had the fortune to come up against a very average Bolton side.
With injuries now building up, and little prospect of new signings, its looks like Darren Moore will have to try and get us promoted on the cheap.
Not our most inspiring performance but the kind of win you need if to stay in promotion contention.
We seriously missed Barnes and Phillips. Holgate looked decent class and I thought Harper and Field did well given their inexperience. Gayle is premiership quality even though it might be just a few touches (or dummies) in the game. His free-kick was impressive.
We are so nearly good enough, but I suspect unless we invest in midfield and a better option than HRK, we will be in the play-off lottery.
Watched the game on Sky. Great to see the Albion on the TV so much and even better to see them win! But in all honesty it was not a great performance they really did seem to be playing at half speed. Then again you could say it is a sign of a good team that can play poorly and still win. I know Bolton sat deep and tried to play on the break (and nearly caught us out a few times) but our passing and movement was very sub standard: too slow, too many touches and too one paced. Barnes and Phillips were sorely missed.
On the brighter side of things; in Johnstone we seem to have a top class keeper, our Everton loanee right-back seems a better fit than the Man city loanee (who maybe a better Centre Back!) Our defence seems to be getting tighter. Harper looks the real deal. Yes he made mistakes and got caught out a couple of times but his potential was plain to see and it was great to see Fields score a very well crafted goal. It came from one of the few times we actually zipped the ball around and it was a lovely bit of off the ball running that created the chance.
Overall a win is a win is a win and 3 pts on a wet night in Bolton is nothing to be sneezed at. A run of big games coming up which will go along way in deciding our season so very much a case of onward and upwards.
PS Great travelling support last night. It must be a real boost for the team
PPS Still a bit concerned about Darren's use of subs / lack of use!
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