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Trotters need to start performing in front of TV cameras

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Richard Heathcote

If you were not aware, Bolton's match against Birmingham City on Saturday at St. Andrews will be live on Sky with the kickoff time adjusted accordingly to 4:15am on the West Coast of the United States, 7:15am on the East Coast, and a 12:15pm local. TV matches in the Championship are a rare occasion for fans not able to travel to matches, be they home or away, and it's an especially rare occasion for Bolton Wanderers.

The Trotters have appeared on television just four times since being relegated to the Championship at the conclusion of the 2011/12 season. Those four matches have seen Bolton face opponents at various ends of the table at different points of the season but, on the whole, they have not gone well. In front of the television cameras, Bolton Wanderers have won once, drawn twice, and lost once.

24 August, 2012 - Bolton Wanderers 2-2 Nottingham Forest

Lewis McGugan gave Nottingham Forest the lead in the first half with a thundering drive from all of 30 yard drive that rifled in off the underside of the crossbar and into the back of Adam Bogdan's net. Bolton Wanderers would equalize just before the break after Chris Eagles cleaned up Kevin Davies' header that was denied by the post before Marvin Sordell gave Bolton the lead. The goal against Nottingham Forest was Sordell's first for the Trotters but it was not the last score of the match. The ever-troublesome Andy Reid popped up to rescue a point for Forest just shy of the hour mark with the match ending at 2-2.

3 November, 2012 - Bolton Wanderers 2-1 Cardiff City

Bolton Wanderers welcomed the league leaders (and eventual champions) in what was Dougie Freedman's first match as Bolton Wanderers manager. Craig Noone opened the scoring for Cardiff City before the half after Wanderers failed to clear the ball in their area from a cross in what had become a recurring theme with the club. After the break though, it was the David Ngog show. The forward won a penalty for the home side on 69 minutes that Marvin Petrov coolly dispatched before scoring the winner with a fantastic little flick just five minutes later.

3 August, 2013 - Burnley 1-1 Bolton Wanderers

It was the opening match of the current campaign, a match that celebrated 125 years of the Football League with this derby opening up the proceedings. Wanderers went behind on 25 minutes after Danny Ings broke past David Wheater and sent a shot in. It wasn't a clean strike, deflecting off the Bolton defender, and hitting the back of the net. Darren Pratley would level matters ten or so minutes later though with a nice first time effort hit from the penalty spot. It was just the start of Bolton's troubles this season.

24 August, 2013 - Bolton Wanderers 0-1 Queens Park Rangers

The most recent of the TV matches and the only one that Bolton Wanderers have lost to date. The difference in this one came from Andy Johnson, who finished Clint Hill's low cross from close range ten minutes after the halftime break. Bolton Wanderers struggled to hold onto the ball and (once again) struggled to finish their chances. It was really par for the course from the rest of the season.

Bolton Wanderers will have to step up their performance this weekend for the cameras, taking on a tough and free-scoring Birmingham City side away from home. The Trotters will be buoyed by the 0-0 draw at Blackpool midweek and will hopefully carry that kind of defensive performance forward.

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