In a season of very few positives, Bolton Wanderers lost again yesterday against Middlesbrough to send fans into a fury as we marched ever closer to relegation.
Onto my five things then:
1 - Luca Connell
In a game full of shambolic performances, the youngster was the only shining light amidst all the shite that surrounded him.
Expressive in his play in a manner that his more experienced colleagues could only dream of, he was also as tenacious as everyone else was passive.
I can only hope that his injury isn’t as bad as maybe it seems because to me the manner of his departure from the pitch seemed like a goodbye gesture to me which, if turns out to be the case, would be a sad way to end his Wanderers career.
2 - Josh Magennis in League One
Is he the man to fire us out of League One next season? I have my doubts.
Yet again he put in a deeply poor performance in an attacking sense and gave absolutely no sort of challenge to the Middlesbrough defence in any sort of way.
His career record is poor and so perhaps we shouldn’t be expecting any different but given the responsibility he’s likely to shoulder next season it is seriously concerning to think that we might be relying on him to fire home the goals that we need from him.
3 - Failed Wing-Back Experiment
Craig Noone is not a wing back. He’s a very poor wing back, in fact.
I don’t wholly blame him for this - he’s only doing what his manager asks of him, but he was appalling against Middlesbrough and this should hopefully be the last time we ever see him given that sort of role.
Pavel Olkowski was equally disappointing and this perhaps was worse than the issues that Noone had. The Pole’s attacking prowess is such that you’d think he’d be a natural at the role but he was unable to get forward enough to make a difference.
4 - The Untouchable Phil Parkinson
Yet again he’s lost a game and yet again there is not a sniff of a chance that he’ll lose his job.
Understandably, the nature of the club means that there is probably a good excuse for this given how phenomenally awful Ken Anderson is in terms of the footballing side of things.
Despite this, the manager is the one responsible for arranging and motivating the team which, I think is fair to say, is not one of his strengths.
The sooner Parky leaves the better, but I think we all know that it won’t be any time soon.
5 - Complete Overhaul Needed
Whilst driving home last night I was contemplating the future of the playing squad and I came to the resolution that I would not be particularly upset if they were all to leave the club.
I appreciate that some people have sentimental attachments to certain players, such as David Wheater and Josh Vela, but a subjective observer might come to the conclusion that a lot of these players (and not just the two previously mentioned) have either been here far too long or lack the required quality to be anything like good enough for us going forward.
Start at the bottom and work our way to the top. Get them out and start again.