Following a convincing home win over rivals Tranmere Rovers, Bolton Wanderers travel to St Andrew’s to face Coventry City away in Birmingham on Saturday 8th February as The Trotters look to make it two wins out of two for the first time since November. Perhaps more significant to Wanderers would be the opportunity to string together successive clean sheets and they face the side on Saturday against which their youth players heroically secured a 0-0 draw to earn Bolton their first point of the season.
Two of the Bolton starlets to feature that day are competing for a starting spot on Saturday, with Tranmere goal hero Dennis Politic hoping to keep his place over the impressive Ronan Darcy who was rested for the game. Bolton suddenly find themselves with options available as deadline day signings Ryan Delaney & Jacob Mellis are both available. Bolton fans will have to wait a little longer before seeing Tottenham Hotspur loanee Anthony Georgiou in action.
Bolton fans will be hoping to see recent debutant Kean Bryan build on his impressive start for Wanderers in the new look back four. There are no new suspensions afflicting Wanderers although Jason Lowe and Ronan Darcy are both just one yellow card away from facing a one-game ban. Bolton of course will have to see out the season without winger Will Buckley, who was cruelly ruled out for the rest of the season with a broken leg. There are no dates indicated for long term absentees Ali Crawford or Jack Hobbs but Wanderers fans will be encouraged by recent social media posts from the club indicating progress with their respective rehabilitations
The Sky Blues edge the historical head to head with 8 wins to Wanderers 4 in league and cup with the sides sharing the spoils on 10 occasions. Coventry have not beaten Bolton since 1998 although on that occasion they ran out 5-1 winners at the Reebok Stadium with Dion Dublin & Darren Huckabee both bagging a brace apiece, Scott Sellars troubled the scorers for Bolton.
If the Sky Blues are to repeat that hefty score line, they will be looking to their striker Matt Godden, with the forward their currently top scorer with 10 goals this season following his signing in the summer from League One rivals Peterborough United. Coventry will be hoping to make it 8 games unbeaten as they face a Wanderers side at the foot of League One. A win could also see the midland club enter the automatic promotion positions as the race at the top of League One continues to be very crowded.
A win for Bolton could bring them within 2 points of Southend United in 22nd place. The immediate concern for Bolton is to start getting together a sequence of positive results if they are to realistically have a chance of achieving survival.