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Wanderers Ways. Neil Thompson 1961-2021


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Posts posted by paulhanley

  1. That's the type of win that's required if you're serious about the top two. The Reading game was the opposite. You'd hope that the Reading game led to the learning that went in to getting that result over the line today. Now it needs replicating several more times. 

    To continue to prove they have what it takes there can be no "after the lord mayor's show" on Tuesday. A scruffy 1-0 win would be fine. Saturday/Tuesday/Saturday - great and determination as well as the skill and the quality.

  2. 5 minutes ago, desperado said:

    I thought we’d put that one to bed last week when the hysteria kicked off about fitness after Reading? Character, fitness and stamina was put to the test with 10 men last week and we came through without issue. 

    The thing folk always forget in these debates about fitness is the relativity factor. On a Saturday you might have fitness levels roughly 90 per cent of where you'd like but you're playing a team at 100 per cent. The following Tuesday night you might be up against a side only at 70 per cent. Different days, different circumstances.

  3. The U21s thing is not working. Last night was a total mismatch. If the idea is to give young lads experience of senior football then this would be counter-productive rather than developmental. At least it was United and if we've done them some harm then that can never be a bad thing. Not that I'd be arsed trying to give their fans any stick about the result. It's an embarrassment that our first team is playing their youth in the first place.

    Alternatives could be to invite a small number of tier 5 sides or Jock sides to rekindle the Anglo-Scottish Cup. I doubt the old bill would fancy the latter though.

  4. Historically patience among Bolton fans for third tier football evaporates very quickly. The current set up (FV + Evatt) have not really experienced that because the circumstances meant a lot of latitude. It's not going to last forever. They've been brilliant for us but the bottom line is that as a football club and town we need to be in the Championship. We need to be getting a lot meaner and more resilient about achieving that objective.

  5. Wasn't at the game today but in some respects don't need to have been.

    Automatic promotion sides just don't do what we did today. You come away with a point at the very least and ideally grit out the cavalry charge and win it 0-1.

    Hard to take encouragement.

  6. 51 minutes ago, woolli said:

    Paul, England fans were banned for the visit to Hampden, think 89, we ended up with 6,000 in the ground. Alot of English mobs havin it with each other, Jocks nowhere to be seen. We got tickets very easily outside.

    89 was the last of the annual fixtures. Memorable for Steve Bull ramming home our second in a 0-2 win.

  7. 9 hours ago, Wanderlust said:

    I count both Huns and Hoops amongst my friends and sure both are supportive of other teams but are united in their support for Scotland when it comes to playing England and in general in my experience. I've stood with the Scotland fans in Hampden for this fixture a few times most memorable of which were our 5 nil thrashing of them in 73 when the Celtic fans I was with on that occasion protected my on the way out of the game and the following year when Jimmy Johnstone ripped us a new one when the Rangers fans I went with only took the piss for a month or so - even though they were slightly conflicted as it was one of Celtic's finest who'd done the damage. That was the first time I saw Jinky play and he was so small I thought they'd mistakenly brought on the ball boy - weird seeing as they had Bremner in the same team. Only been to Hampden for internationals a handful of times in the intervening years but haven't stood with the Scotland fans since those earlier matches however if there's one thing that unites the Glasgow (and Edinburgh) club fans it's the common hatred of their "colonialist oppressors" as they like to think of us.

    There is a small minority of both Orangemen and Hibernians/Columbans who put their respective causes ahead of their countries when it comes to football allegiance - but even though both sets of organisations posture a lot, in reality the vast majority of their respective communities don't. For sure they'll sing the songs and pay lip service  but there's nothing like putting one over on the English to make their day.

    My first proper memory of the fixture was in 1978 when we won 0-1 at Hampden with a late Steve Coppell goal. They'd hammered us in the game but couldn't score, Asa Hartford orchestrating for the Jocks seven years before he signed for BWFC. The sweaties were full of their forthcoming trip to the Argentina World Cup: "And England won't be there because they did'nae qualify"

    In all those early fixtures I saw you never saw an away end or England fans at Hampden and the Jocks invaded Wembley and probably had 80-90 per cent of the stadium. 

    Then in 85 England played the Jocks at Hampden and about 10 England fans appeared holding aloft a St George's flag, inspiring venom and enduring projectiles from all directions before being hauled to safety. From there onward the Jocks had to provide an away end. Meanwhile at Wembley England supporters started turning up in ever bigger numbers. 

    Jock Stein said in one of the early 80s games something along the lines of "The English want to win this fixture as much as we do these days". He was right. It was the same last night. I was really happy with England's attitude. I wish our lot had shown the same mindset v Wigan. 

    As for the Rangers thing, I think their fans go a bit silent on this topic these days, having previously been fervent Scotland fans. Not for an Englishman to guess what's gone on there. Let's just enjoy yet another win v the Jocks, no loss v them for 24 years and no defeat in Scotland since that 1985 game.

  8. 18 minutes ago, Leyther_Matt said:

    Sadly it hasn’t been passed down. Wolves fan at work had no idea about Bolton-Wolves rivalry. Felt old as fuck telling her to ask her dad. Handy that there are a few articles in their local press over the years that draw attention to it so very much not a one way thing (for a change, for us). Don’t forget we also managed to draw them in the FA Cup in year one at the Reebok!

    There isn't a Wolves/Bolton rivalry, it was a very 1990s thing that has just faded since. I know a big family of Wolves fans. Mention John McGinlay and a few incidents in the 90s and they might snarl a bit. Otherwise there's just nothing there, in fact if anything they've been glad to see our progress since near oblivion. I certainly feel no animosity towards Wolves even if I did fleetingly between and 96 and 2000. 

    By the way they won that cup match at the Reebok, Robbie Keane. It was the only joy they had against us in away games throughout that period. 

  9. 2 hours ago, Johnnyrotten said:

    Hoping this will be my first away of the season if I can get tickets, but away capacity is less than it used to be.  We'll be in the Bycars End, the Hamil Road now occupied by Vale fans. 

    Not sure what capacity of Bycars is but less than Hamil Rd so not likely to be enough to satisfy demand.

    £25 in home end for this game so presume same for us.

    I can just hear them saying "Bycars" in that puddled Staffordshire accent. 

  10. 3 minutes ago, Zico said:

    Jones Forrester Iredale 

    But it does mean we have to play Cogley or someone out of position

    If Iredale is fit. 

    Do you think Forrester has the physique for that central slot in the back 3? 

  11. I'm looking to see JDB get a decent runout in this match, he's probably short of a match fitness in his legs. 

    I'd like us to try to find a way of protecting Santos and Toal but it feels like we can't avoid picking one of them. 

    Other than that it'd be great if we could pick just one of the B team or at the very least let them have a run from the bench. Matheson? Khumbeni? 

  12. The great win on Saturday has made us all feel a bit better about life but I still feel we're two players short going in to the September-January period. I believe we needed a RWB to contest with JDC and a player of the profile of Abdoulaye Faye who could play CB and holding midfield. 

    I appreciate all of the things folk will say about sustainability and the lack of the right options in the market etc. I just feel that those two additions would have given us that bit extra to make me confident of promotion. 

    Perhaps they'll arrive in January. Perhaps we'll have been fortunate enough to avoid injuries and suspensions in the meantime. 

  13. It's a belting result. 

    How I wish this 2-1 would have been the same one the tangerine seaside shit achieved today. 

    But .wins against Derby are comparatively few and far between in our history and it sits very nicely with the fourth pint of Hook Norton ale I am about to see off. 

    I've a feeling the look of that top nine in League 1 is going to tell the tale of the season. By which I mean (unlike last year) I think there'll be little in it right up to next April between play off placed teams and a bit beyond.


  14. 10 hours ago, ianofcleveleys said:

    The main reason for us being in top six nearly all last season was a sound defence built, at various times, on Santos, Johnston, Toal and Aimson. Only Toal of those likely to be on a pitch for us in next few weeks so anything that happens between now and Friday night you'd think would be focused on that area. Aside from that I'd still like to see Evatt getting in a genuine screening DM. 

    Much as it'd be fun to be thinking of JCH plus Charles and Vic as scoring options I can't see it. Evatt's nailed his colours firmly to the Nlundulu project, not suddenly going to ditch him and I can't see him loaning Jerome out unless he himself pushes for it. 


    If Santos is out for any length of time then we've got a problem that needs addressing. You can't cut corners with central defence. 

  15. Dion seems to have cut out that "one touch too many" syndrome from last season. He's a learning football still on an upward curve. I'd love him to get 20 goals this season without the aid of penalties - and I think he's capable of it.

  16. To get the conversation back on to the market (with the deadline at the end of the week) I still feel we are three players short of automatic promotion material in terms of the squad. That's not to say we'll be signing three players between now and then. I very much doubt we will. 

    I'd say we're a RWB short, I still feel like we are big CB short (this is the one we won't sign because we've got numbers) and we are a midfield hard-man short (be surprised if we got this one too!) 


  17. 4 minutes ago, ianofcleveleys said:

    If Santos is out for a few weeks and Toal only just easing back (don't blame Evatt for not rushing him after a couple of nasty injuries in quick succession), we could go into Derby (and beyond) with none of our recognised defence and two wide men who'd be better defined as 'wing forward' rather than 'wing back'. Add that to the absence of a genuine screening midfielder and it's a bit scary. 

    Time between now and close of business on Friday could be as important a six days as Evatt's had in his time with us. A lot to sort, especially with the continued talk about Charles. 

    I'd agree with this. Santos out, Toal easing back, Johnston gone for the season. How many of the rest of the back three contenders are truly central defenders? Forrester - and he's not a big lad.

    This all plays in to the "lack of physique" debate around the whole squad. Ironically the "will we still be bullied?" question was second on most people's list of issues to resolve after "who will get our goals?" Charles is on 3 and Victor on 4, so we're actually doing OK on that front.

    We just lack physical strength in central defence and central midfield. A certain combination of injuries/circumstances exposes it. The sale of MJ Williams was the right thing but the lack of a direct replacement is a real problem.

  18. 54 minutes ago, Not in Crawley said:

    His views aren't inappropriate. And people should have opinions, but at times folk should listen more before they speak, and that's a case in point.

    And I can't be arsed being dragged into a further dicussion about structural and behavioural barriers to gender inequality because of got a shite load of washing to do, and the weekend big shop.


    And of course you in your infinite and unimpeachable wisdom are the person to adjudicate on whether his views are appropriate or not. Self-appointed of course but that's not for us mere mortals to question.

  19. 7 minutes ago, Not in Crawley said:

    Well that's a daft thing to say. Almost as daft as the preceeding paragraphs, but not quite.

    Daft? You must be in a charitable mood today. He's done well to escape a censorious finger-wagging, being told his views are "inappropriate" and that he should take "diversity and inclusion" training. 

  20. 6 hours ago, Traf said:

    Until we see how the management/players bounce back from last weekend, there's a grave danger of many Bolton 'fans' massively over-reacting to one game.

    It was the second 0-4 home defeat in a row to Wigan. I think people have every right to react very, very badly and the club needs to hear it.

  21. 9 hours ago, Cheese said:

    All complete guess work. Maybe that messaging happened, but it had an adverse effect and put the fear of God into the players, and that's why they played like they'd never met each other before? Who knows? It certainly isn't us.

    Well of course its fucking guesswork. You asked for an opinion so I gave one. Unless I am Ian Evatt, Peter Atherton or one of the squad how could it be anything other than guesswork? 

    If someone put you in to a room with Mother Theresa and the Dalai Lama you'd be trying to provoke a row.

  22. 20 minutes ago, Cheese said:

    They may well be challenging for top 2, but we only have 1 more game against them. Forget about them until January 6th. If nothing else, it'll be good for your soul.

    I think that's FA Cup 3rd round day. There's every chance that return fixture won't be then. It'll be a Tuesday night in Feb or March. If that happens let's hope they sustained more damage in the January window to balance their books.

  23. 20 minutes ago, Cheese said:

    What's the solution?

    In my opinion you get the right information to the players: "These bastards hate us, we're going to have to match their desire and hunger to win this game before we can impose our class. This is not an ordinary run of the mill fixture".

    What's missing is the knowledge. Does Evatt/did any of his predecessors really understand how much teams like Wigan, Blackpool and Bury stir themselves up for games v us? I don't think they do. 

    ... I have said this before in this thread. For me it was very telling that Phil Parkinson won us our first game at Gigg Lane in 87 years. He'd played for Bury and knew the mentality there and he said as much just before that particular match.

  24. Just now, Cheese said:

    So if we beat Blackpool in November, your theory is destroyed? I know what you're getting at though. It's just one of those things. No need to get the almanac out. "Bogey teams" don't have actual magic powers.

    If we beat Blackpool in November we'll have won two league games out of 11 against them. It'll be a start at reversing the bad trend. It might also indicate that the club/playing staff have finally understood that if you stroll in to games like that like its a bog standard match in League 1 you're going to get very badly found out. Those games need different treatment. Derbies are one-offs. It's not rocket science and its the same the world over. But Bolton Wanderers just don't seem to operate like that.

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