What a night. Really enjoyed every minute of it.
With that being said, let us crack on:
1 - Our Spirit is Back
Bolton Wanderers. What a club.
After the darkness of the Anderson era, Wanderers have emerged into the light and last night was one of the most enjoyable evenings I’ve spent at the match in recent years.
In combination with our unerring ability to wind other teams up (hi Doncaster fans!) seemingly back as well then it’s only a matter of time, surely, before results on the pitch match up and we can start moving forward, together.
2 - Keep the Upper Tiers Shut
The atmosphere was superb.
Yeah what with the circumstances being perfect we had a much higher than expected crowd on (9,602 to be precise). The takeover, the goodwill felt by fans towards the players and with Keith Hill’s arrival as manager all combined to bring about a brilliant turnout by fans.
Surely Football Ventures can see the sense in keeping those upper tiers shut - not only saving us a few quid in stewarding but in bringing fans closer to one another it fosters a superb atmosphere which must surely give the lads on the field a boost.
3 - Some Real Talent
There are some excellent players in that side. Adam Senior was brilliant, Matthew Alexander failed to put a foot wrong, Yoan Zouma was terrific, Jordan Boon performed manfully and Dennis Politic was just outstanding. Every single player was just beyond reproach.
Given yesterday’s exciting Deadline Day movings, some of those players might well have thought they were making what could’ve been their last game for Bolton Wanderers and, if that’s the case, they certainly went out with a bang.
4 - Experience Over Youth?
One concern I had back when we started to be linked with these older players was that some might come in and displace the exciting youngsters whom we’ve been forced to blood this season.
On the evidence of last night’s game, can you imagine dropping Dennis Politic for Will Buckley? It just wouldn’t be fair, or right.
I don’t know much about the defenders we’ve signed, but given the performances of Harry Brockbank, Adam Senior, Yoan Zouma and Jordan Boon do they deserve to be dropped in favour of their older counterparts?
I think the goalkeeper is perhaps a different matter because of the physicality that role demands, but to blindly continue with the error-prone Remi Matthews does seem like a disappointment when we are so blessed in other departments.
That said, I think despite Eddie Brown’s fantastic display, the need for more strength and nous up front is telling. Hopefully Daryl Murphy and Chris O’Grady can bring that.
5 - I Love Being Happy
Being a Bolton fan isn’t always a joyous experience.
However, how good did it feel walking out of the ground last night?
The result was immaterial really. Everyone I spoke to and saw had a smile on their face. After the crap we’ve had to put up with from the club over the last three years I think we, as fans, have deserved some happiness and to have something to applaud.
The excitement at Dennis Politic running forward, the supportive applause and songs from the 9,000 odd in attendance. It was like having my club back.
I loved every second of it.