Bolton Wanderers traveled up to Fir Park during international break weekend, to face Motherwell in Keith Lasley's testimonial. Here's what we learned:
1) Goalkeeper situation
It's only right we start with the first position on the teamsheet. There were quite a few eyebrows raised when we brought in Paul Rachubuka prior to the game with a backup goalkeeper arguably being very low on most fans' priority lists. However it was very surprising to see Harry Campbell start the game. The 19-year-old is usually below Ross Fitzsimons in the pecking order but Fitzsimons wasn't involved at all. This could mean a few things:
1) We might be sending Fitzsimons out on loan.
2) We might have just been saving Fitzsimons for the U21 game against Cardiff City two days later (unlikely as some of the younger players involved on Saturday started for the U21's today).
Or 3) With Fitzsimons being 21-years-old, not considered good enough to be backup and with only a year left on his contract, it may be that he just gets skipped over and Harry Campbell steps up with him having more time to develop. It will be interesting to see which one of these proves true.
The game was a great opportunity to blood our two most recent acquisitions; Francesco Pisano and Jose Manuel Casado. They played 45 minutes and 75 minutes respectively with Neil Lennon saying that both need to work on their fitness a little bit more before they can be included in a competitive sense.
Reports from the game are encouraging though, and it seems like Pisano in particular made quite a good impact with his desire to get forward and support the attack along with being solid defensively.
With the steady form of Lawrie Wilson and the great start to the season Dean Moxey's made, it will be very interesting to see where they fit in once they get up to speed.
3) Selection headache
Neil Lennon named a totally changed team from the Blackburn Rovers game with only Wellington Silva keeping his place in the lineup and it was a great opportunity for some fringe players to get a game.
The Bolton News' Chief Football Writer and friend of the site Marc Iles suggested that Derik Osede and Stephen Dobbie both did their chances of starting against Wolverhampton Wanderers next week no harm whatsoever.
On Derik's return from injury, he looked composed with his distribution being a highlight of his game and Stephen Dobbie made it two goals in his last two appearances. I still think that he's best served as an impact sub but it's definitely food for thought and with Dorian Dervite suspended, I think that Derik will definitely start against Wolves.
The game was also a great opportunity for the younger professionals in the squad. Harry Campbell, Alex Finney and Tom Walker started, whilst there were also substitute appearances for Quade Taylor, Rob Holding, Kaiyne Woolery and recent recruit George Newell, who was assigned the number 51 shirt prior to the game.
It's interesting to note that U21 captain Niall Maher wasn't involved, nor was Hayden White, which could signal loan moves for those two.
Reports from the game say that Woolery's pace caused a few problems late on and as a regular attendant of U21 games, it's great to see so many of these players in and around the first team, being rewarded for their good start to the season even if it is in a mostly meaningless friendly game.
5) Alfie Lasley
Sign. Him. Up.
No, although I'm obviously joking about that, I thought it was a great touch for Keith Lasley's son to come on and for us to let him walk through our defence and score a goal with the game already won.
Paul Rachubka 'joked' that he was tempted to save it, but knowing him he probably wouldn't have kept it out anyway.
We love you really Paul.