It’s that time of the year again when the doubters come out and accuse Kevin Davies of being old, fat, slow, or past it. A scathing blog post emerged this morning with claims written by an idiot who quite clearly knows nothing about our beloved Bolton Wanderers. If you’re interested in reading that post, you’re on your own to find it as I won’t even justify it by linking to them. I mean seriously, the title of aforementioned blog post is neither punctuated correctly, capitalized properly, and makes nearly zero grammatical sense.
The fact of the matter is (and we’ve gone into this on many occasions before) that Kevin Davies is not an out-and-out goalscorer. His best seasons in terms of finding the back of the net came in 2008/2009 where he scored 12 times in all competitions but with all of his goals coming in the Premier League. Before that, Kev’s highest total was also 12 on two separate occasions. One coming with Chesterfield in the 3rd Division in 1994/1995 (11 league goals, one in the league cup) and again with Southampton in 1997/1998 (9 league goals, 3 in the league cup).
Super Kevin Davies’ game isn’t that of a goal poacher that will ride the offside line in order to tap in a cross or collect a deflection for the easy score. While he’s more than capable of doing those things, it is not Davo’s primary goal. He is a distributor of the ball in the final third, something that Bolton terribly need. In two matches thus far this season, the forward has tallied an assist and a goal while last season he assisted seven times, making him directly responsible for 17 goals in 2010/2011.
One of our Twitter followers and massive Bolton supporter, Matthew Rowland, commented (quite correctly) that the Trotters can not afford a (proven) goalscorer who can add 20 or more goals to the side every season. This leads Owen Coyle to gamble on young but inexpensive talent like your Jack Wilshere, Daniel Sturridge, and (hopefully) David Ngog.
A pacy young forward could easily run onto one of Super Kev’s flicked-on balls into the box and coolly finish. In all competitions last year, Bolton had goals from 16 different players, a feat that rivals Arsenal, Chelsea, City, and United while besting Liverpool. While yes, a proven goalscorer would be fantastic, it’s not something that Bolton can afford and do not necessarily need if they will get similar production from the squad this season. So far in 2011/2012, Bolton have seen 4 different players score. A great start, that.
And then we get to the non-goalscoring part of Kevin Davies’ role on the field. Watch him over the course of a game, does he stop running or going in hard? Hell, it barely looks like he gets tired during the 90 minutes. It’s common knowledge that SKD gives and takes a beating on the field while he’s chasing down balls, going for every aerial challenge that comes his way, and making much needed tackles, even if they are only 8 seconds into the game.
People oversimplify Kevin’s game into something that it’s not. The critics argue that he’s a thug and doesn’t score enough goals but I hope that I’ve been able to convince you that Kevin Davies’ presence on the field and importance to the squad is so much more than that. He’s our captain and one of, if not the most, hard working footballers in the game but at the same time one of the nicest guys off the pitch. Stand behind him.