So now we know. The newest occupant of the Bolton Wanderers hotseat is none other than lifelong Wanderers fan and former Rochdale boss Keith Hill, ably assisted by long-time no.2 David Flitcroft.
Wanderers problems have been well documented. A terribly disrupted pre-season has meant that our recruitment strategy has been non-existent leading to a perhaps not too surprising set of results thus far.
So what does Hill need to do, now that he’s got the job he once described as a ‘bucket list’ opportunity for him?
1 - Recruit Quality, not Quantity
It would be really easy for Wanderers and their new manager to race out and immediately try and pick up 10-15 new players just to boost the squad. The important thing is that those who are brought in should have the ability and experience to immediately bring things back around on the pitch.
I would also be very much in favour of getting rid of every single senior player that we have. Not just for their participation in various strikes at the club but mainly because the likes of Remi Matthews, Luke Murphy and especially Jason Lowe just aren’t very good.
There is better out there. We shouldn’t be afraid of letting a few go as we bring more in.
2 - Selective Use of the Kids
The kids certainly are alright. That said, not all of them are ready for a full season of professional football.
I’d like to see the integration of 4-5 of the lads who played so well this season into a squad of more experienced players.
It’ll be interesting to see Wanderers lean on young players with that blend of those who know the leagues and who are a little stronger and more streetwise.
The likes of Brockbank, White, King-Harmes, Politic, Darcy and Brown would be my choices. The rest could do with a loan out to League 2 or the Conference for some much-needed game time.
3 - Get Us Back on the Front Foot
For obvious reasons, Wanderers have played a defensive game so far this season.
Hill forged a reputation at Rochdale for playing adventurous attacking football and this is something that will stand us in good stead once he has the personnel at his disposal to do so.
God knows us fans could do with something good to watch, considering the drudgery of the last few years under Phil Parkinson.
It’s going to be an exciting few weeks.