Often Partisan

Relegation Rave at the Reebok: Bolton Preview

with thanks to @TheSpecialRon for today’s title

Blues travel to Bolton today knowing that even a win against Dougie Freedman’s side may not save them from relegation. However, a point may be enough if Doncaster Rovers lose to Leicester City.

Bolton

Bolton lie 14th in the table, on 58 points and can finish as high as 12th and as low as 15th. Their form of late is good, having won four of their six games in April although they lost their last home game to Champions Leicester.

Dougie Freedman has been using the last few games to blood youngsters from Bolton’s Academy as he prepares for next season in advance; Andy Robinson who is on loan from Southampton may also start.

Blues

Paul Robinson returns to the side after suspension and may come in at left back to replace Mitch Hancox with Jonathan Spector and Hayden Mullins remaining in the middle. Peter Lovenkrands is fit and could return for his swansong while Lee Novak could miss out through injury.

Blues have gone past the realm of must-win games now; their only hope is a good performance here and points coupled with other teams slipping up. With five defeats on the spin and a woeful 2014 record regardless of other results Blues should be aiming to play for the 3,800 fans who have made the trip north and sign off with something for them to shout about. As much as the club have tried to whip up inspiration in videos and messages I have no doubt that the away fans are very much up for it regardless – it’s the team on the pitch who need to be inspired and the worry is heads have dropped too far for them to do anything.

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84 Responses to “Relegation Rave at the Reebok: Bolton Preview”

  • Kazakblue says:

    Go out there and play your hearts out, you may not be at Blues next year, but it is certainly in your own interests to show what talent to prospective new clubs, you owe all Blues fans a win, today is that day.

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      This season only Huws, Burn and Macheda of the loans have shown any interest

      • Chris W says:

        Think that’s a bit harsh on Bartley and Lingard.
        We can’t rely on loan players again though, we need players who want to play for the supporters as well as the club.
        KRO+DNM

  • mark says:

    lets have the biggest smile today kro

  • mark says:

    lets hope for joys instead of sorrows……blues win

  • It’s as good a final game to the season that we could get. Bolton have given up for this season whilst Leicester are keen to win at home and end the season on a high. And thank god we’re not at home for such an important game! To quote Bob the Builder, can we do it, yes we can.
    KRO

  • beegeeblueboy says:

    I hope the fans there get a run for their ‘money’. Concede an early goal and it could be a rout.

  • Geoff S says:

    Do the owners, manager and players really understand what is happening at BCFC and do they really care what many supporters are being put through? Irrespective of today’s results, the owners are not fit to run anything and the manager, although working in tremendously difficult conditions, is surely about as far out of his depth as it is possible to be.

    Lee Clark should have been dismissed months ago and that further underlines the thoroughly disgusting cynicism of the current owners/board of directors.

  • edd77 says:

    Just saw team we down, Reilly left bk caddis midfield no macheda all over

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      Maybe Clark, Yueng and Pannu have a double on Carling Cup win and playing in League 1 by August 2014?

  • What does Macheda have to do to get a start??!!

  • Chris W says:

    Nice to see so many on the trip up, the atmosphere is buzzing and there is an air of optimism. All depends on the team that turns out and how much they want it.
    I haven’t got a prediction right this season and I am not going to try for this one other I think we will do enough from our part just hope Leicester can help us out.
    KRO+DNM

  • EddieBirmingham says:

    my prediction is Millwall will lose, Doncaster will lose.
    It’ll all be in our own hands and we will still bottle it and get relegated.

  • Always a Blue says:

    Macheda on the bench,even jeff Snelling is. Surprised,

    For the fans why not play centre half’s at centre half and in form strikers from the start,Robbo/Martin or Packwood in the middle

    Spector should not be in the team in any position on current form

    Even Ollie lee had a decent win ratio with the odd goal and assist

    LC is going for a draw and will react when we go 3.0 down

    Always a Blue

  • Chris W says:

    Can’t believe the team selection, no recognised C/H, where is Martin? the midfield is so full of holes and Burke has been a disgrace to the shirt the last 3 home games, as if he is already on the beach.
    Why is LC doing this to our club, is he determined to take us down. Even the tea lady could have put out a better team…
    KRO+DNM

    • Auld Bertie says:

      Unfortunately as I predicted yesterday Chris another uber defensive line up with so many players out of position. Whatever happens today, and I’m dearly hoping we stay hope, the clown has to go.

      • Chris W says:

        Well Auld Bertie, not sure how but he pulled it off, though he finished with the team I would have probably started with, exception to Huws/ Hancox, which I can only think was because of injury.
        He has had a fair crack of the whip with Blues and I agree it is time to go…
        KRO+DNM

        • Auld Bertie says:

          Agree Chris. Fantastic comeback but the stark reality is we were 2-0 down with 12 mins to go in a game we really needed to win to give ourselves a better chance of survival. I think it was our magnificent fans as much as anything else who got us over the line. Clark’s passion was admirable at the end but I think it was more his sense of relief than anything else. I honestly don’t believe we’d survive a third season with him in charge.

          • Chris W says:

            Don’t think I could either.
            When I lived in the Highlands I had similar passion for Inverness Cali, as they were my local team but I have always been a Bluenose, ever since Mr Hennessey took me to my first game in 61.
            Seen some passionate managers, Barry Fry and some good ones, Stan Cullis, Freddie Goodwin, but I think my worst ever has to be Lou Macari, closely followed by Lee Clark.
            I know I have left myself wide open to some flak but we are all entitled to our opinions.
            However, I never fail to be moved by the Blues faithful, From Wembley glory to last day relegations, the fans of BCFC have always moved me….
            KRO+DNM

          • Auld Bertie says:

            That’s really strange – my Scottish team is Cally too! I love Inverness and the Highlands in general and 10 years ago or so flew up there for 3 consecutive years to do the Ben Romach 10k road race in Forres near Elgin. We stayed in Inverness each time and attended one of their matches the one year. I even have a Cally shirt :)

            On another subject me and the missus went to watch the Blues ladies yesterday and as has happened so many times with the men this year they were robbed by a string of shocking refereeing decisions. Going to Sutton Town a week tomorrow to hopefully watch them thrash the villa :)

          • Chris W says:

            Small world as they say, I lived o’er the Black Isle in Bonar Bridge.
            I watched the ladies in the Champions league and was impressed with the standard of football, haven’t watched them in the league yet, might take the missus to one though. She isn’t into football, but she does keep a keen eye on Forest and I think she takes delight in texting me their result, especially when we lose…
            KRO+DNM

  • Bluenosesol says:

    Guys, lets save the negativity until after the game. Leicester fan told me that the team have promised the fans that they wont let them down like they did when they lost 1-4 at home to Brighton after they gained automatic promotion. Kevin Phillips has promised to do his best to beat Doncaster . Clark needs to listen to the Bolton manager Dougie Freedman. He said that he staved off relegation against the odds on two occasions. HOW? – Two strikers and two wingers and s**t or bust!!!. Come on You Bluuuueeeeesssss!!!!! Relegation my *rse!!! KRO!!!

  • Auld Bertie says:

    Never felt so happy to be proved wrong :) Still think we pulled it off despiteClark but today is not a day for recriminations. Fabulous result – well done to everyone there.

    • Chris W says:

      Like you, it is not a day for recriminations, talk about cutting it cutting it fine.
      A pint or two for celebration will be enjoyed tonight…. Well done to the “never say die” attitude today.
      KRO+DNM

  • Kazakblue says:

    My nerves are shot, fantastic result, well done to everyone, vodka tonight to celebrate :))))))

  • Chas says:

    :-) We are Safe.

  • Art says:

    Hopefully the start of a brand new beginning.

    Well done LC for going for it and good luck with your new career.

  • Geoff S says:

    My emotions have got me seriously choked up here. I thought at 2-0 down it was all over but Andy Walker’s commentary/blog on the BCFC website reported that Blues had some fight about them today.

    I can’t help wondering if Championship survival will increase or decrease the chance of these truly awful owners selling the club (is it 5 possible bidders?). I also think (along with Auld Bertie) that Lee Clark should not be managing Blues come the build-up to next season. Newcastle, Australia job? Is that just sports gossip or is there something more to it?

    • beegeeblueboy says:

      Why didn’t you follow a stream?

      • Geoff S says:

        Beegeblueboy. Thanks for your question but I’m afraid my IT/social network skills and knowledge are very limited. What exactly is a stream?

        • beegeeblueboy says:

          A internet site that plays live matches

          • Geoff S says:

            Thanks for info. Let’s hope there’s a positive way the club can try to slowly make its way out the horrible nightmare it has been mired in under the current owners and that better times may lie ahead.

  • bluenoserob says:

    for me the last 3 years have been made worse by never really knowing that we had reached the bottom of the graph , maybe after 93mins today we reached that point , how sweet it would be if we could look back in years to come and say that this day was the day our great club stopped falling and began to rise again.if so i salute every blues fan that stuck by the team , we deserve so much more than this , and finally to Dan ..thanks KRO

  • beegeeblueboy says:

    The first half showed Clark got the team selection right. We deserved to be leading. It gave us some firepower on the bench: Ibe made the difference and Macheda gave Zigic more space. Zigic again proved crucial: one goal and an assist. As has been said our points per game average is better with him that without him.

    Only the players can say how much the support there helped them, but I expect it really did

    • Andrew says:

      good points but i dont see how you can say ibe made a difference?

      • Chas says:

        I only hope whoever takes over tries for Ibe, Huws and , being very silly, Macheda again.
        .

        • beegeeblueboy says:

          I think we have no chance getting those three back

          • Chas says:

            I wouldn’t agree with you squire, cos they wont get into their own teams yet, tho Macheda is out of contract I believe, so qwe don’t have much hope there, but to see him celebrating, he looks like a Bluenose :-)

          • beegeeblueboy says:

            I just think their parent club will want them to play for play-off contenders as Manure wanted with Linegard

          • Chas says:

            Yep, that’s Us sorted with them then ;-)

        • Steve says:

          We would only get Ibe and Huws on loan but i think they will go to better teams if they go on loan again.Macheda,although out of contract will go to the prem imo.

      • beegeeblueboy says:

        Maybe we were watch different matches. Constantly pulling people out of position and his shot triggered the second goal

  • Chas says:

    Dan , If I shouldn’t be posting this, please delete it (but let people watch it first )

    https://vine.co/v/MrPX7iOhbQD

    • mark says:

      hi chas manager and players i personally can say fully deserved…..happiness…..the journey was fully of joy :-)

  • AussieBlue says:

    ‘Strewth! I mean bl**dy ‘STREWTH!!!!!!!!!! I normally don’t drink at 2am, but here’s to a special one for Blues and another one for you fans who were at the Reebok…it’s obvious to me that the ‘one more goal’ chants and passion got through to the hearts of the players. Did I say “Strewwwwwth???????”

  • RichardM says:

    I was never worried….

    I’m going to contradict mysefl here somewhat, and thank Lee Clark for keeping us in the division – even if by the skin of our teeth, with bugger all money and no help from above he managed to achieve all that he realistically could – keep us up, and that was no mean feat, regardless of what anyone says.

    That said I think it’s best for both parties Lee Clark now move onto pastures new. I’m worried for his health and that of his family if he continues, because I can’t see things improving financially for at least 6 months. It was closer than it should have been, and I’m convinced there are managers that could have made a better fist of it than Lee Clark has done. Lee, if you’ve got a chance for a nice new lifestyle in sunny Oz, then for the sake of yourself and your family take it!

    • Geoff S says:

      Good shout, Richard, although if you were never worried, you must be fortunate to have nerves of reinforced steel…

      Lee Clark has done what he could but he ain’t the man for the job. That said, who do you think might be?

      • RichardM says:

        Actually gents, that’s a complete lie, my trousers have been surgically removed and are being flown to a specialist dry cleaner in Geneva as we speak…..only very briefly though, at 2-0, the minute Zigic scored I kinda knew through the noise of the crowd and sheer will power we’d get another……

        As to a replacement, I don’t know, maybe Gary Rowett (because of the old blue connections) or could we (now Championship status assured) try and attract someone like Karl Robinson at MK Dons who is recognised for being one of the top managers in the lower divisions and admired for his style of football. Mind you, I think we’ll need new owners before we could tempt anyone of any promise or calibre..

    • bluenoserob says:

      you were never worried ?

    • mark says:

      never worried as well Richard…….this manager does not run away……. if anything he will want to prove himself again imo……but we will see……

  • Richard Granfield says:

    What a fantastic game. If someone had written a fictional story about it, they would have been accused of fantasy.
    Blues are record holders as well. Since the inception of the Football League Championship in 1992/93 season, no club has avoided relegation with 44 points or fewer!
    I am pleased for Lee Clark too. He has come in for a lot of stick from armchair managers, but has triumphed in the end.

    • bluenoserob says:

      what happened today was wonderfull and we will never forget it , but triumphed ….no not for me.

      • Richard Granfield says:

        Triumph. Def. “Great joy at great success or achievement”
        Considering all that has gone on this season didn’t you experience great joy? Don’t you think staying in the Championship was a success and an achievement? I do.

        • Steve says:

          That squad shouldn’t have been in that position.Clark’s selections and tactics are mostly to blame for this woeful season.

    • Chris W says:

      Typical Blues, never do things the easy way and put the supporters through the emotional mill.
      I have been critical of Lee Clark, as have many others, and not without just cause. Today his line up was another “Oh NO!” selection and I thought this is it, at 2-0 I could only see us collapsing to a rout.
      Ziggy pulled on back and then the nail biting started, 2-2, the final whistle and watching Lee Clark sprint down that touch line, you could see how much it meant to him. If nothing else he has always been passionate, and today I was pleased for him, for all his misfortunes he, along with the loyal supporters, did not deserve to go down.
      However, I seriously think that it is time for Lee Clark and BCFC to say farewell, we both need to start afresh and go our separate ways
      I do believe that LC deserves better than our present regime of ownership has given him, but I don’t think he will do anything at BCFC.
      KRO+DNM

      • mark says:

        sorry chris imo i simply disagree with you there mate…..sorry to say again its the players who had to sort out today like they should have done many months before. Until individual errors are out of our way our wins win ratio going to be quite poor, but today our players definately stepped up to the plate with the realisation of where we were going to drop , not selections or formations. it the players taking responsibilities we should have scored hateful before half-time….again failed to hit the net……bless Clark he must have drummed into them about the second half……what a big blow 2-0 down how earth can you blame CLARK??……THANKFULLY the players can hear us singing kro down their bloody ears……….

        • Chris W says:

          I am not taking anything away from the players today, the supporters did their bit in turning things around too, never once did I hear any moans or groans around me.
          Although it was the right result today, it is easy to blame Clark, over the season he has made some horrendous errors and team selections, we should never have been in this situation and THAT is down to the manager.

          I guess we will have to disagree, but Lee Clark should not be manager come August.
          KRO+DNM

          • Steve says:

            Triumphed in 1 game shouldn’t keep him his job.Credit for Saturday,but he has to go.

    • mark says:

      absolutely right Richard they sit in their arm chairs with self pity nothing else, other than blind hatred……….you have too feel the emotions to understand what a bluenose is all about…. and clark truly demonstrated that today with us fans…………

  • Geoff S says:

    For anybody who has not yet done so, click on the @TheSpecialRon link Daniel included at the top of this piece. A load of tweets from moronic villa park children wetting themselves shreiking they were going to have a party because “the Blues are going down”. Perhaps they should find out what the word premature means…

    • Nose23 says:

      Haha so glad we spoilt there so called party!

      Put your beers on Ice you lousy Vilers! your not mathematically safe yet

      I would be in dreamland if they lost the last 2 games and Norwich won theres

      Wishfull thinking huh? lol

      • Geoff S says:

        I can’t see Norwich staying up but it is good to see the smug vilers taken down a peg or two. People who don’t bother thinking and who publicly leave themselves open to ridicule deserve all they get.

        • Nose23 says:

          It is m8 I hope all that beer that had went to waste haha

          I watch this over and over

          I hate the Villa with a passion!!

          KRO nd SOTV!!

  • Ali Duncan says:

    Just got in. My throat is still sore. What an atmosphere, what a game!

    It felt Spurs away all over again but once Ziggy scored you just felt we’d do it.

    A very proud Bluenose tonight.

  • mark says:

    one thing i love is been a bluenose i return feeling very special, tear fell from face at the final whistle…………it good to be home

  • mark says:

    why i nearly forget all those at their computers and laptops clark is bluenose :-)

  • mark says:

    hopefully now Clark can start getting players in instead having them ripped from us, hopefully some of the higher earners will consider a payment reduction??… and collectively we can learn from this experience together, united as one. we want players showing that fight and passion all season….. we want the present owners if you dont sell that;s fine but commit in helping Clark achieve all our goals…the policy of loanee where necessary ……………together COLLECTIVELY our future can be bright…………kro

    • Geoff S says:

      Mark.

      What have the present owners of Blues done to the club? With utter cynicism they have ripped the club apart and left it in the nightmarish state it it currently in so how can you realistically expect them to commit to anything positive?

      There can surely be no way forward for BCFC as long as they are involved.

      You also want Lee Clark to stay. He’s fought his guts out and done his best in conditions created by owners who you think may be okay to stay if they “commit in helping” Clark “achieve all our goals”?? Are you serious?

      I don’t know how many high earning players Blues can be said to have right now but some are likely to be leaving the club now the season is over and others have signed contracts and agreements re how much they are paid.

      • mark says:

        can demonstrate that…..Again where will be a way forward but not with millions pump in i would think. randy learner who pumped in 100 million for mob over the road (where is his return on that fortune??)…We needed a settled side but unfortunately some of our own players have only touched what it like to play in the championship, some now will be battle harden. imo i would like ziggy to stay will he stay for 3,000 grand week???
        No other manager was prepared other than Clark…… please give him the credit he deserves hughton ran away (look what happen to him)…..Also the biggest question of all does Carson wish to sell, in-hindsight if we went down in imo maybe!!………….
        Now i am not so sure if anything but he is prepared to give 25% stake of bcfc so lets wait and see…………

        • Geoff S says:

          We’ll just have to agree to disagree.

        • Steve says:

          you were one of Ziggy’s biggest critics.you need to remember what you’ve posted before.

          • mark says:

            Hi Steve extremely pleased that Clark has got the best out Ziggy after Clark told ziggy how it was going to be….. Sorry to say Steve I won’t be last person who will have pop. Like you I have opinions as far as that concerned take or leave my son…..otherwise kro

          • Steve says:

            If you don’t want people to respond then don’t post…… Just my opinion….. Take it or leave it my son…… Just my opinion …….. KRO. Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device

          • mark says:

            I am glad you do respond Steve it makes my day…..

    • mark says:

      Sorry Steve did my comments hit nerve……not too worry

      • Steve says:

        Nothing you say mark hits a nerve. Most of it is pointless drivel. Just my opinion. Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device

  • Nose23 says:

    I’m on cloud 9 tonight the atmosphere today was immense, us noses always make a difference

    Soo proud of them and cannot put into words how chuffed I am so so so elated and relieved at the same time

    KRO!!!

  • mark says:

    http://www.bcfc.com/news/article/20140503-bolton-2-blues-2-fan-gallery-1525093.aspx fan power, united as one, feel the pain, feel the pleasure, now you are born a bluenose………..staay with you for life………..kro

  • Paul Carter - Voice of Reason says:

    Much as I hate people who do this on this occasion I am happy to say ‘told you so’

    Lets hope the hatred and bile just ebbs away and come on down you 5 bidders

    • Luke Bowen says:

      Agreed. You were only really half-right (you said we’d win the game), but it was the important half of the equation to be fair.

      There is a lot of anti-BIH rhetoric, but I think it’s borne out of frustration at the lack of communication and the perceived injustices (like executive remuneration).

      I’d be interested to know what you think about Lee Clark carrying on next term. If we get new owners that can provide some investment, would you hope for a new manager, or give Lee another season?

  • Paul Carter - Voice of Reason says:

    Dan, a question if I may. If you knew the identities of any of the bidders would you publish them?


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