Here are my predictions for our beloved Bolton Wanderers in the 2017/18 season.
First Six Games
6th Aug - Bolton 1-1 Leeds
12th Aug - Millwall 1-2 Bolton
15th Aug - Birmingham 1-1 Bolton
19th Aug - Bolton 2-1 Derby
26th Aug - Hull 3-1 Bolton
9th Sep - Bolton 1-2 Middlesbrough
We've got a tough start to the season. I think we'll be hard to beat, but Hull City will have too much for us. I'd happily take 8 points from the first six games. We can't afford to start the season the way we became used to under Douglas Freedman and Neil Lennon.
Final League Position
Anywhere between 16th and 21st. We'll be in that final group of sides scrapping for survival. I think Parky's knack for organising a team defensively will see us pick up unexpected points here and there.
In a disappointing pre-season, only Jeff King has really stood out for me as ready for the first team. Alex Perry may play a part as the season goes on, and Connor Hall could find minutes with us quite shy up front.
Signing of the Season
Stephen Darby. He's been solid in pre-season, and I might eventually get over my Lawrie heartache come May.
Alfie. I don't see any Wanderers player breaking 12 goals this season. Alf might just get to a dozen.
Sammy Ameobi or Filipe Morais. They've both got the ability to change a game and create chances.
How will Parky do?
This is Parky's biggest challenge in his management career. His record in Leagues One and Two are impressive, but he know has to master The Championship, with the added financial and transfer limits placed upon him.
I don't think anyone is in a better position to manage Bolton Wanderers than Parky in these times. Unfortunately, his performance might turn heads with other clubs in the division. I can see a team like Preston North End, Queens Park Rangers or Ipswich Town looking to Parky if they start the season poorly. I hope he stays, because should we come out of the other side of this quagmire, he could build a competitive side at this level.