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The Return of the Mack

Liam returns from a period of anonymity to give his thoughts on the changing landscape at Bolton Wanderers

Bolton Wanderers v Huddersfield Town - The Emirates FA Cup Third Round Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images

I almost regret stepping aside for some time whilst I focused on some work commitments, I missed the only moment of unbridled joy I have experienced since writing for this site. Whilst I have been away much has changed.

Lion of Vienna have a new managing editor in Eddie Skelly (and what a fine job he is doing), Aaron Wilbraham has cemented his place in Wanderers’ folklore and we get to play Wigan Athletic, Blackburn Rovers & Stoke City next season.

Exciting times indeed.

Nursing my hangover after the jubilation of the final day, after which was spent in reflex until 5am, I began to ponder on just what Phil Parkinson had achieved at Bolton. It truly is remarkable what was achieved with such minimal resources and considering we sold our best player in the last hours of a transfer window with no direct replacement, it is even more impressive.

Parkinson has a real grit about him. He is able to work himself out of the most difficult position and his unwavering loyalty to his philosophy has to be credited. Many weaker-minded managers would have succumbed to the pressure of both the fans and startlingly (publicly) the chairman to change and line-up in a more attacking formation.

He stuck to his guns and has been rewarded, the magnitude of the moment at the Macron made all the toil and despair in the weeks previous dissipate into sheer joy and I can’t be the only one still watching that video on repeat.

So what now?

The noises coming out of the club, both through our more infrequent Chairman’s Notes and the Bolton News is that the club is now discussion investment with numerous interested parties, I don’t doubt this is the case at the club. The problem is that without this investment, eventually Bolton will go down, only a fantasist can truly believe we can achieve anything in this division without targeted investment. We may stay up another year, another two maybe but eventually we will go down.

I think this predicament has been recognised by those who need to and given the assets at the club and its location, I would be very surprised if the club didn’t get the investment it desperately needs. A nod of appreciation needs to go to our ownership too, getting those costs down to the levels they are now will only make the club more appealing and therefore more valuable.

It seems as though the ownership see Parkinson as the man to take things forward and no matter of your opinion of whether he is or isn’t, you can’t deny he has earned the right to try. Personally, I’m very pleased to have Parkinson continue.

As for transfer targets it’s anyone’s guess, I know we desperately need a big man up top and whilst I can’t see the rumoured loan return of top-shagger Gary Madine, that sort of player is exactly the type we require if we are continuing with Phil Parkinson in charge. Indeed, gossip-monger Alan Nixon tweeted (I’m told anyway, I’m blocked) that Bolton have made this a signing in this position an absolute priority.

It should be an exciting summer…