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Bolton Wanderers vs. Burnley

Reebok Stadium

Tuesday 26th January 2010


Burnley Owen Bolton a Beating!

Until the Owen Coyle saga started in the New Year this fixture would just have been viewed as a normal derby albeit a must-win game against another struggling side trying to avoid relegation. That of course remains the same with the Clarets in 15th spot just one point from the drop zone and two points ahead of second-from-bottom club Bolton.

It would be an understatement now though to say this match will have some extra spice following the disappointment of Coyle jumping ship along with the whole of our backroom staff to make a sideways move down the road to the Reebok. The anger, frustration and animosity of that desertion following all the platitudes and lies of Coyle`s perceived loyalty is going to be difficult to control for a number of hurting and bitter Clarets fans.

The importance of this game in the hearts of all Clarets fans is now a million times higher than it would have been had Coyle still have been our manager and to some getting a result in this match is now even higher priority than beating Blackburn Rovers! How fitting it would now be if our first win on the road in the Premier League was against the club managed by someone who failed to achieve such a victory for the Clarets.

Predicted Team Sheet

Brian Laws will have an embarrassment of riches to choose from in the strikers department with both Martin Paterson and Jay Rodriguez now fully recovered from their injuries. Steven Fletcher was rested in the FA Cup defeat at the Madejski last Saturday and he should now be available after fully recovering from his slight ankle injury picked up in the recent game at Old Trafford. Although Steven Thompson struggled in the first half against Reading and was replaced by Paterson for the whole of the second half, it now transpires he had been suffering from an illness the night before but it is believed he has now recovered. He too therefore could now be in contention for the match against Bolton. Then we have David Nugent who is also eligible for this match with his current loan agreement not completing until after the game.

It doesn`t stop there though because we brought another striker to the club on loan last week, AS Monaco forward, Frederic Nimani and he too will be in contention assuming we get international clearance in time.

It is virtually impossible to predict the team selection up front for this one with so many options available and it will be interesting to see if we decide to play just a lone striker up front or whether we adopt a 4-4-2 formation.

Only two players in the squad will definitely not be available for this match, Andre Bikey is returning from the African Nations Cup in Angola after Cameroon were knocked out of the competition at the quarter final stage last night and captain, Steven Caldwell is still struggling with a persistent groin injury. Clarke Carlisle was on the bench last Saturday after recovering from his side injury but with both Duff and Edgar playing well in the centre of defence, Laws may wish to keep things the same in that department.

One problem for Laws could be the left-back spot. Stephen Jordan pulled up with a hamstring injury in training just before the Reading game and with Kalvenes on paternity leave; Chris McCann made a return to the first team by filling in at left back. Laws will be hoping Jordan has recovered but he remains a doubt at this stage and we await further news.

Something tells me Owen Coyle has a huge advantage in this game since he knows all our players and their strengths and weaknesses. I think Laws should attempt a few surprises and give him something new to think about. As a precaution I would then have a bench that could revert to our normal style of play should we need a Plan B. One player who has been disappointing of late is Wade Elliott and it could be time to drop the Wembley hero to the bench.

Subject to fitness and availability, I would go with the following team but in no way do I expect Brian Laws will agree!

Jensen, Mears, Duff, Edgar, Jordan, Alexander, Guerrero, McCann, McDonald, Eagles, Fletcher

Subs: Penny, Carlisle, Gudjonsson, Elliott, Blake, Nugent or Paterson, Nimani

Bolton Wanderers Team News:

Coyle has fitness concerns over several players ahead of this match.

There was great controversy last week following a challenge by Arsenal`s William Gallas on Bolton midfielder, Mark Davies in their midweek clash at the Emirates. Coyle made some strong statements in the post match interview that the tackle was 'akin to assault 'and despite retracting his original comments, still believes action should be taken. The referee clearly thought the challenge was hard but fair and allowed play to continue. Unfortunately for Bolton, Arsenal carried on to get an equaliser to make the score 2-2 and eventually went on to win the match 4-2 and complete a double over the Trotters having played them at the Reebok only a few days earlier. The incident though left Davies with a suspected serious ankle injury although scans later revealed the damage was not as bad as first feared. He does however look doubtful for the clash against Burnley.

Ricardo Gardner (groin), Gavin McCann (ankle) and Matt Taylor are also all doubtful, but there could be a debut for their new on-loan midfielder Vladimir Weiss. He joined this week from Manchester City.

Davis & J O'Brien (both knee) are also out injured and Danny Shittu is involved with the African Cup of Nations in Angola. The Nigerian international saw his national side progress to the semi-finals on Monday after beating Zambia 5-4.

Player to watch: Ivan Klasnić

It is perhaps telling that Bolton`s top scorer this season is a defender, our former loan player, Gary Cahill with 7 goals (5 of them in the league). In the league itself though Ivan Klasnić is their top scorer with six goals so he could be the major threat. The 29 year old Croatian international striker signed for Bolton Wanderers on transfer deadline day of the 2009-10 season on a year-long loan from FC Nantes.

Burnley Team News:

Captain, Steven Caldwell is the only player definitely out of contention due to injury. He is still suffering with a persistent groin injury.Jordan pulled up with a hamstring injury in training and missed our last match against Reading in the FA Cup 4th Round game last Saturday so remains doubtful.

Our new signing striker Frederic Nimani on loan from Monaco will be in Burnley's squad assuming international clearance to play is received. Steven Fletcher will also return after missing the FA Cup defeat by Reading with a slight ankle problem.

Laws will face a dilemma in his choice of strikers with Nugent eligible to play despite his loan expiring after tonight and both Martin Paterson and Jay Rodriguez now fully fir to play after their long term injuries. Paterson of course played against Reading in the second half coming on from the bench at half-time to replace a lacklustre Steven Thompson. It was later revealed that Thommo had suffered from a bout of illness the previous night and it is now clear why he appeared to lack energy and influence on the pitch. Thompson will hopefully now have recovered and also be in contention.

Cameroon international, Andre Bikey will also not be available for this game due to his involvement in the African Nations Cup in Angola. He will however now be travelling home after the Indomitable Lions exit from the competition yesterday (Monday 25th) following their quarter final defeat to Egypt.

Player to watch: Chris Eagles

Mr 'Consistently Good' of late, Eagles could have a huge influence on the outcome of this match and we need him to continue with the excellent form he has shown recently most notably against Manchester United at Old Trafford.

Back to the Future

The Clarets of course last played Bolton in the Boxing Day game at Turf Moor a month ago. A goal by Matthew Taylor from a direct free kick after 29 minutes was enough to give Bolton the half-time lead against an under par and lacklustre Clarets team before Nugent headed in Wade Elliott`s cross to equalise after 56 minutes. It was the Clarets who then surged forward looking for the winning goal. We looked a much better, determined side in the second half and had countless opportunities to put the game beyond Bolton`s reach. We just couldn`t take our chances though in a season which is becoming all too familiar in that respect and despite the possession in the end we had to settle for a disappointing draw.

These two sides had not met previously in the top flight since March 1964 when we played them twice over two days something that wouldn`t be allowed these days. In those days men were men and on the 30th March 1964, the Clarets got beat 2-1 at Burnden Park with Willie Irvine bringing the score back to 2-1 after 35 minutes play. Incredibly we then played them at Turf Moor a day later on the 31st! This time the score was 1-1, Arthur Bellamy scoring in the 81st minute to cancel out Bolton`s 58th minute goal. Bolton would be relegated that season second from bottom, with the Clarets by their own standards finishing a disappointing 9th.

We would not play them again for another 12 years and this time the clash would be in the old second division after the Clarets relegation season from the top flight at the end of 1975-76. A 0-0 draw at home and a 2-1 defeat away was all we could muster in a disappointing season that saw the Clarets finish 16th with Bolton just missing out on promotion in 4th spot.

The last time we played Bolton at the Reebok was in their promotion season of 2000-01 and it was the opening game of the season played on the 12th August 2000 in front of a crowd of 20,662 fans. Bolton opened the scoring after 26 minutes before Gray got th

Ref Watch:

Yorkshire referee, Martin Atkinson gets the honour of being in charge for this local derby and now guaranteed pot-boiler.

Match Prediction:

In all fairness a point will do nicely in this match and keep us two points ahead of the Trotters having played a game more. Three points though would be a wonderful bonus and be a huge smack in the face to our former gaffer. All Clarets fans will be hoping against hope we can get our first three points on the road this season in a match that now has an edge to it big time! One thing we will need to be careful of will be set-pieces and we need to make sure we don`t give them too many. Bolton have scored 68% of their goals via that route which is the highest amount in the Premier League. The Bolton current form guide though seems to give us a chance. The Trotters have not kept a clean sheet for 22 league games since a 0-0 draw with Sunderland in May and Bolton have only earned 10 points from 11 home games this season. Only Portsmouth have a worse record in the Premier League. They have also only won just one of their last 11 league games losing six of them and drawing four. I suppose their poor home form contrasts with our poor away form with just one point in eleven games on the road so something will have to give. Four of the last five matches between these Lancashire rivals have ended in draws, including a 1-1 draw in the reverse fixture on Boxing Day. I believe a draw is on the cards again and I will go with a 2-2 score line hoping of course I am totally wrong and three points come whizzing our way!

Next Match

It does not get any easier for the Clarets with our next match being against Chelsea at Turf Moor on Saturday 30th January. Clarets fans are reminded this is a late televised live match kicking off at 5:30pm.

The Journalist

Writer: turfmanphil Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday January 26 2010

Time: 10:03AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
As I said on Facebook, apart from Wembley last season, I don't think I have ever felt like wanting to win a game more than this one in years! Come on you Clarets!!
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26/01/2010 10:08:00
A draw would do you certainly but how sweet would this win be! Come on Clarets! And the only thing wrong with Billy's challenge was that he clattered the WRONG Davies :-)
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26/01/2010 10:18:00
TMP Spot on. I want to win this one! We need to start getting points away from home and getting one or three from Horwich tonight would be fantastic. I was brought up on football in the fourth division watching the team I love not playing very well against Hereford and the likes. That was a low point. However!!! This my club! The club I love! The club my dad supports! The club my sons support! It's in your blood! You are born with it. Claret and blue runs through your veins when your a burnley fan. It makes you proud to be a claret! Proud. Together we are Burnley! (Had to get that in)
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26/01/2010 10:29:00
Unfortunately I can't go to this game I am on a late shift at work, however I will be there in spirit. I think eveyone wants a win tonight. But no matter the outcome I hope (well Know) that the singing BRIAN LAWS CLARET AND BLUE ARMY, needs to lift the roof off the rebok. Get behind the team, manager and board what ever the score don't stoop to their level. COME ON YOU CLARETS
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26/01/2010 10:43:00
Kalvenes will be available at left back if needed,he is now the father of a baby daughter
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26/01/2010 10:44:00
I can't concentrate on anything today other than tonight's clash. Just stopped work and have returned home, quivering, for a strong coffee. If anyone touches me I reckon they'll get an electric shock! Help! Is that nurse about? H-e-l-p!!
Brompton Claret
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26/01/2010 10:59:00
It is only on replay here in Australia at 9am tomorrow morning. Just as well I am on holidays otherwise the boss would have been getting a phone call with a fake cough from me!!! GO YOU GOOD THINGS!!!!!
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26/01/2010 11:14:00
Regardless of who we all think should play, I'm looking forward to seeing Laws' team selection. He should have a good idea by now of the way he wants the team to play. The more I hear from him, the more I like it but as with all managers, time will be the test. I’ve got a feeling that Robbie Blake will play a big part in this one, whether it be from the start or off the bench. One point will do us, but I’ve got a strange feeling that tonight will re-ignite our season. One thing is for sure, all the players will be up for this one, they’ll be as disappointed as all of us were with the defection. Come on Burnley.
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26/01/2010 11:15:00
Just noticed a mistake sorry, if we get a draw we will of course be two points ahead still and not 3 but Ill still take it!!
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26/01/2010 11:47:00
Come on boys!
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26/01/2010 12:07:00
Good luck tonight to the team and all supporters going and congrats to Kalvenes.
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26/01/2010 12:54:00
Just about to hit the roads and turn off my lap top. Next stop Bolton services around 5.30 ish. No way he will start Guerrero tmp. Insert Nugent and you have just about got the team. Against Manure Nugent and Fletcher looked good until the injury to Fletch and then Nugent went on to put in a good shift with one bad miss. SheClaret I will have a shout for you tonight and my favourite gooner fan Julie. Let the Upper Tier Rock.
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26/01/2010 14:11:00
One weakness Bolton have tonight with players injured is in the midfield They will try to stop Burnley playing football this is why we need to keep the ball on the floor, play good football and go for them right from the start. Use our wide players to get in behind their defence. Bolton are not second from bottom because they are a good side quite the opposite they are worse at the back than us and leak goals like a bucket without a bottom. so come on Burnley lets exploit them
Albmaleaf claret
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26/01/2010 14:15:00
Tough one this. Bolton have looked more positive since judas arrived there so i'd be tempted to play the same system as we played against utd. I think i'd also keep Mccann at left back, Kalvenes is just too darn slow. If we can play like we did against utd then we'll beat them, the chances will come we just need to take one. I think it also allows us to shuffle the pack if we need too. Maybe moving mccann into centre mid, grezza back to left back and giving Nimani the chance to cause some problems up top (bit of an impact sub). So to summarise.... Jensen, Mears, Duff, Edgar, Mccann, Alexander, Mcdonald, Elliott, Eagles, Nugent, Fletcher. I think the key to winning this is harrassing Knight - remember how terrible he was at the turf? Not a clue! And tuffness at the back, Duff and Edgar must win the ariel challenge. Up The Clarets!!
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26/01/2010 14:37:00
I feel both nerves and excited a massive game for the Burnley fans. We will be very very vocal, and roar the lads to victory.
Grimsby Claret
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26/01/2010 15:39:00
We (my aussie hubbie and I) flew over for Wembley and in August and this season has been magic no matter what, but I really really want to murder Bolton. Normally every single Premier game is on live in Oz (via the red button on Foxtel) but the Bolton game is on a delayed telecast at 6am Perth time. Will be up to see us win and put Coyle back in his box - Hoofers 1 Clarets 3. C'mon you Clarets
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26/01/2010 16:21:00
I feel a bit like Christian Kalvenes but we've not had the darned baby yet. I have an antenatal class with the wife and I have found out it is not wise to put football before your first child. I just hope this quirk of fate means that Burnley will finally win away from home....when I'm not there. Enjoy it people and get behind the lads!
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26/01/2010 17:13:00
Good one VR! Enjoy the match! Come on Burnley! Come on Burnley! Give them another football lesson! Fingers crossed for ya!
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26/01/2010 17:20:00
Am about to set off for the match but would ask all clarets to spare a thought for me !! Couldn't get a ticket so have been forced to accept an offer from a notlob workmate to sit next to him in the 'home' end. Bad enough i hear you mutter - he's only invited a deadwood inhabitant too!! So, I'm stuck between those two in the wrong end. The things we suffer for the cause. Be well worth it if the result goes our way though, hehehe.
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26/01/2010 17:41:00
Work commitments mean I miss this one too but I'll be glued to SkySports, the interweb and my mobile from 8pm. Really think we should go for three points here and VR and I agreed on Saturday that the surprise factor of Nimani might be worth a go. The Trotters won't be expecting that.
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26/01/2010 17:50:00
Carlisle back in for Edgar,New signing Vladimir Weiss starts on the bench (set to come on and score the winner) starting line-ups then: Burnley: Jensen, Mears, Carlisle, Duff, Kalvenes, Alexander, McCann, Eagles, Nugent, Fletcher, Elliott. Substitutes: McDonald, Paterson, Edgar, Blake, Thompson, Nimani, Penny. Bolton: Jaaskelainen, Cahill, Muamba, Taylor, Knight, K Davies, Steinsson, Klasnic, Ricketts, Cohen, Lee. Substitutes: Samuel, Robinson, Elmander, Gardner, A O'Brien, Weiss, Habsi.
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26/01/2010 19:30:00
Bolton could not even sell all their tickets for this!!! BIGGER CLUB?
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26/01/2010 20:00:00
Here we go then! Bolton to kick-off Come on you Clarets Brian Laws Claret and Blue Army
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26/01/2010 20:05:00
Chris McCann down injured in the first 5 minutes Burnley down to ten men for the moment McCann now back on
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26/01/2010 20:11:00
to be fair bolton are the team we broke our away woes against, so maybe it will be the same for you! hope you get a result against that judas.
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26/01/2010 20:13:00
Not looking good for Chris McCann in fact he is off McDonald on
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26/01/2010 20:15:00
Alexander limping now he is off Paterson on attack attack attack!!
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26/01/2010 20:20:00
kalvenes goes close for Burnley (getting increasingly peed off with how much Coyle is up for this) Bolton score for ffs sorry
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26/01/2010 20:38:00
Bolton 1-0 Burnley
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26/01/2010 20:40:00
Cheers LH missed you there ;-) Mears brought down free kick just outside the box off the wall for a corner leads to nothing!! Come on Lads
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26/01/2010 20:47:00
Half-time Bolton 1-0 Burnley
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26/01/2010 20:55:00
Right my Bertie Bee masgot is lined up to watch the second-half! me and my mate don't know what else to do? losing McCann and Alexander early was a big blow, Come on the Clarets this Bolton team is well ***** poor!!!! second-half under way
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26/01/2010 21:09:00
Nimani makes his first start for Nugent I think missed it! send Nugent back I say nobody wants him
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26/01/2010 21:35:00
Full-time totally peed off owen coyle steve davies traitors, hard to take tossers, fair play to them that went! lost for words where do we go from here? hard to pick ourselves up after that! Bolton 1-0 Burnley
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26/01/2010 22:06:00
Let's get all the bad stuff out. Up to 5 players injured. Laws 3 Goals 0. In bottom 3. Onblot's first shut out of season. No-one likes us. Chelsea next. But we've played 3 more away games than Blonto. And always... always dare to dream.
Couch Potato
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26/01/2010 22:17:00
Well i hate to say it but " i told you so" Laws is clueless ! He can't get the players fired up for the biggest away game of the season. That's why we sacked him. 5000 Burnley turned up, pitty it wasn't 5011.
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26/01/2010 22:30:00
P.s See you next season.
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26/01/2010 22:43:00
PP.s Bigger club my backside.
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26/01/2010 22:44:00
I hate to say I have too agree with you duds if we could not get up for this game gawd help us! wrong man for me, I am not normally one for getting on a managers back (short time I know) but fuming I am! no idea no clue sorry Kilby sorry Flood but no ambitiousness, cheap option back to the Championship here we come, hope I am proven wrong but I doubt it!!!
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26/01/2010 23:01:00
Hard to take! They certainly appeared to want it more than us. 2 forced changes in the first 15 doesn't help, but no excuses, just not good enough today. Cuold be a long road back now, let's hope Laws has got something up his sleeve that he is yet to show.
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26/01/2010 23:18:00
Any word on the injuries?
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26/01/2010 23:40:00
What has Blake done to suddenly get no games? Apart from the fact he is one of the few who can shoot accurately he is our main creative player and sets up a lot for the front players. Bring back BLAKE.
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27/01/2010 00:52:00
Mr 'Consistently Good' of late, Eagles could have a huge influence on the outcome of this match or maybe not.
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27/01/2010 01:33:00
going down lads, going down lol
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27/01/2010 01:43:00
It's not an easy thing to keep shape when we lost two influential players early on. The loss of Alexander was particularly damaging. Poor judgement from Kalvenes for their goal. Witnessing your wife giving birth is perhaps not the best preparation for the game such as this. Things don't look too good and the table desn't lie but I don't think the new manager should necessarily be taking the rap for this. He's not been dealt a good hand.
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27/01/2010 07:53:00
The sooner we realise we need more quality the better, lets be positive Mears was superb, Eagles played well, lets go for tudgay , this left back form celtic this young irish centre half give him a try . some of the players we have are good honest players but if we can not beat a very poor bolton side who i still think will struggle we are in trouble. if we dont get these thing sorted soon we are in trouble, buts lets get behind the team
Albmaleaf claret
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27/01/2010 08:06:00
Lets not get to down hearted yet, this time of year we always go into free fall, then come March we start to climb again. I hate to say it but I thought that by the end of Jan we would be in the bottom 3. Having said that I do think we will just scrape out of the play offs by the end of the season.
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27/01/2010 09:01:00
Loosing the midfield general that is Graham Alexander was the worst possible start, not to mention McCann as well, so we ended up with forced substitutions instead of tactical. This is always the danger this time of the season with small squads - the injuries. It's not over till it's over, and it's way too early to start knocking Laws. Let's see if the squad can be reinforced before the 31st and we'll go from there. Bring on Chelsea :-) Whatever happens, I'll still follow them to Leyton Orient and back.
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27/01/2010 09:02:00
Confidence and just a sprinkling of luck. Hits the bar and comes down over the line, Mears fouled one foot outside the penalty box could have been reversed with a bit of luck. We were not relegated last night, our learning curve now enters the phase where we have to all be TOGETHER in the fight for survival.
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27/01/2010 09:19:00
Right I have got the Coyle thing out of my system (Holy Judas article) so now hopefully I can concentrate on an objective match report which I will put up tomorrow! It wont be flowing though, we were woeful
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27/01/2010 22:39:00

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