Wanderers first defeat in ten but our nearest rivals Fleetwood lost as well. What's to learn?
Plan A; this involves a 3-5-2 with Madine up front playing a holding striker role. It has been very successful for us these last few months. The issue is that the team seem to insist playing this way even when Madine isn't there. As the 0-0 home draw against lowly Chesterfield showed, it doesn't work. So as the squad is hooked on plan A, PP tried a similar type of striker up front, namely Conor Wilkinson. Two missed sitters highlighted that Conor isn't yet the next 'big Gary'. This may be due to the fact that this 21 year old has great potential but still a lot to learn, or because he has all the ability and grace of a giraffe at a watering hole, the shithouse. Whatever, we need Madine back sharpish to get that win at Oldham.
Inevitable promotion? Even when defeated we take a step closer to going up. We needed nine points, lost a game but now only need six. I just can't shake that winning feeling. It's like opening a door and letting someone else through first only for them to insist that you go ahead before them. An Oldham win will be lovely though.
Player Incentives; when arriving at the ground in a coach used by the Premier League Champions, upon looking out the window, you see a stadium that looks like it's sunk into the ground and has a big green tractor parked at the front entrance, surely you must think 'fuck this for a game of soldiers, I want to be at proper stadiums'. Let me assure you the fans do! Win. At. Oldham.
Team spine; Wheats, Spearing OR Pratley, Vela and Madine. If one part is missing, we seem to be half a team. When they're there, we seem unstoppable in League One. So, no clubbing for you this week Gazza me lad. We need all four of our 'spine' players against Oldham.
The Oldham game; I may have mentioned this once or twice. Win it and we could be promoted. An added advantage though is that it will give Parky a few competitive games to start planning for next season. None of us want a repeat of the 15/16 disaster. Most importantly though, it'll be my lads first ever Bolton away game. Therefore we absolutely have to win, its the law and it says so in the bible. Apparently.