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Wolverhampton v. Bolton

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Emotions were high throughout the second half of last Wednesday. Someone on Twitter (and I can’t for the life of me remember who. If you know, please mention it in the comments and I’ll give credit where it is due) said something that summed up the match perfectly. "0-0 felt like a win. 1-0 felt like a win. 1-1 felt like a loss."

Three points would have been nice. A little breathing room would have been cool. Results went our way though and we sit 6th in the table, something that we can be seriously happy with. Unfortunately, just 5 points separate us from the drop zone. Mistakes are not an option.

This weekend’s opponents, Wolves, sit firmly in the drop zone. They’re second-bottom in the table on just 9 points. Amazingly though, they have just one less win than us on the season. They’ve lost 3 of their last 4 games and will have to bounce back if they have any hope of enjoying another season in the Prem.

Wolverhampton did beat Bolton in the corresponding fixture last season with a 2-1 result. Jody Craddock and Nenad Milijas were the goal scorers for Wolves while Elmander pegged one back late for Bolton. Zat Knight was the lone scorer in the return leg later that season as Bolton went out 1-0 winners.

Wolves have three players that are doubts for the matchup with Bolton: Stephen Ward has a gash on his shin, Kevin Doyle broke a bone in his hand vs Arsenal, and David Edwards has a thigh issue that forced him to leave the mid-week match after just 8 minutes.

Bolton the other hand will be missing at least one key player while another is a doubt. Gretar Steinsson (who came off in the 59th minute vs Everton after a knock) is suspended after picking up his 5th yellow card of the season. Johan Elmander is dealing with a virus that may leave him on the bench. Ivan Klasnic (who scored what we thought was the sure winner vs Everton) may get the starting nod.

In the matches that we've failed to get the deserved result in thus far this season, Bolton have consistently done two things that have lead to their demise. First: the long ball. The games that have seen us do exceptionally well are the ones with short, attractive passing, none of this hoofing-the-ball-upfield stuff. Second: shots. In the games that we do well in, we outshoot our opponents. Simple as that.