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Man of the Match: Bolton Wanderers vs Huddersfield Town

After an encouraging win against local rivals Blackburn Rovers, Bolton failed to make it back-to-back wins and instead suffered a demoralising 2-0 defeat at the hands of David Wagner's Huddersfield Town. We will now look at some of the individual performances in a little more detail.

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It was a poor afternoon for Darren Pratley, as the former Swansea man continues to struggle to have any sort of impact in midfield. The weaknesses in Pratley's game are even more prevalent as Bolton have removed the third central midfielder following the return of Zach Clough.

Pratley is an old-fashioned central midfielder who will put in a hard shift and does, quite commendably, get up and down the pitch. The issue is that technically, he cannot play at the high tempo that Bolton are trying to. Numerous times following quick passing featuring particularly Davies and Clough, the move broke down following a heavy touch or wayward pass.

His tackling seems to get worse every week and he is a sure bet for a yellow card. I'm undecided as to whether he is struggling to win the ball clearly or is taking the frustrations of his poor attacking play out on the opposition.

Pratley does not warrant a place in Bolton Wanderers starting line-up and is without doubt a poor choice as captain.
It was a trickier afternoon for his midfield counterpart Josh Vela also. Vela struggled to get into the game as he was swamped by Zach Clough dropping deep to receive the ball and Mark Davies attempting to influence the game by coming inside. It meant that Vela could really do little to be involved.

Defensively however, Vela still had a responsibility and struggled here, particularly in the second half as Huddersfield Town had repeated opportunities to attack with acres of space in front of the Bolton centre backs. Both goals came from these situations and whilst I am aware that Vela had been moved to right-back before the 2nd goal, by this point Huddersfield had identified the weakness.

A more positive performance for Bolton was that of Liam Feeney. For all his weaknesses, Feeney continues to try and change Bolton's fortunes. He's no star but when you watch Bolton it is easy to see why he is not only our top scorer but also our top goal-assister. He tries to get the ball in an area which will make a difference.
It was clear that Huddersfield were wise to the threat that Feeney can pose and seemed well equipped to deal with it. It didn't stop the lad from trying though and I'm happy to praise him for his gusto.

In a surprising turn of events, I'm actually going to award the man of the match to Prince-Desir Gouano. I am not a fan of Prince, I think his technique is terrible and is the source of the countless mistakes he will make throughout his career. However, the man is an athlete and yesterday it all came together into a performance of dominance.
Prince is quick and is very good in the air and alongside Wheater looks a more assured presence and can perhaps be a competitive Championship defender.

It is quite difficult to look at the performances with any sort of hope at the moment and this result has brought a lot of people back down to earth after the Blackburn Rovers game. The team needs some new blood but we simply cannot get it.