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Preview: Bolton Wanderers v Sheffield Wednesday

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Can Bolton claim their first win...? Probably not.

David Rogers

Championship football returns after the International break with the visit of Sheffield Wednesday to the Macron. However there isn't much to look forward to as a Bolton fan at the moment.

The latest miserable defeat at Leeds United was followed by the transfer window closing with no sign of that much needed new striker, a win would help lift some of the gloom.

The last few days of the transfer window really sums up where Bolton are in the transfer market at the moment as fellow Championship clubs were able to bring in forward players that we simply couldn't afford. Jordan Ibe, Glenn Murray, Sam Baldock, Patrick Bamford and Luciano Becchio all players who are an improvement on what we currently have moved to Championship rivals late in the window.

Lets hope Dougie Freedman gets lucky again in the loan market like he did last season with Lukas Jutkiewicz. He has already made a signing as he continues to stock-pile ordinary Championship central midfielders, this time Owen Garvan from Crystal Palace.

Early team news seems to speculate Freedman will return to his trusted five across midfield for the visit of Wednesday. With Garvan available to play and the return to fitness of Mark Davies five in midfield may be in the managers thoughts. I can already hear his excuses after another stale performance as he argues that he picked an attacking team.

With David Wheater injured it remains to be seen who will partner Matt Mills in the middle of defence. Either Dorian Dervite as a straight replacement or Dean Moxey could come in at left back and allow Tim Ream to return to the centre of defence.

Looking at Wednesday's forwards both Nuhiu and Stevie May are physical players and Ream often seems to struggle against these types.

Also there is a decision to be made at right back with Kevin McNaughton still an injury doubt. Hayden White who has been poor every time I have seen him play both for the first team and the under 21's would be the favourite to retain the shirt. I'd much prefer to see Oscar Threlkeld who was solid if unspectacular at the end of last season.

Sheffield Wednesday have had a fairly settled team so far  and have made a bright start to the season with two wins, two draws and a defeat suffered in the last game before the international break against Nottingham Forest.

Like any ambitious Championship club they spend money on a striker in the transfer window with Stevie May joining from St Johnstone for £800,000.

He has already opened his account and looks to have formed a decent partnership so far with giant Austrian Atdhe Nuhiu. On the final day of the window Wednesday agreed a loan deal to take Royston Drenthe from Reading. He should be available for selection and I remember him causing our defence problems on his previous visit to Bolton at the start of last season.

Looking at our performances in the previous games this season I fail to see how we can cause Wednesday enough problems from our limited possession and then prevent them from creating chances.

Freedman has often blamed poor finishing as the reason we have struggled to pick up points however this is only really valid for the Leeds game. There are problems throughout the team with a defence that is regularly overrun and a midfield that fails to contain or create.

The midfield is often so deep that the forwards are starved of service but they also seem to allow the opposition to build play from the back far to often.

Anyway Saturday presents a chance to start putting things right, hopefully the ill-publicized lads trip to Ibiza will have worked wonders for team morale, Garvan and the returning Mark Davies will create a much needed spark from midfield and our strikers/striker will start taking some chances but maybe I'm clutching at straws.