There it is then, relegation to the fourth tier. It was somehow fitting that Wanderers’ fate was sealed in an announcement from the EFL like so many have in Wanderers’ decade long decline. After a quick check on social media, it seems the overriding emotion for most Bolton fans is one of relief as we can move on without the baggage of the previous regime & past mistakes and we can now get on with our glorious rebuild and of course three successive promotions.
Personally, I have never been more relieved as a Bolton fan, as now my Dad’s 30 year long argument that he saw us play in the fourth division and that it would never be that bad means nothing. Now if only Lidl are interested in some of the South Stand, we can really put that narrative to bed once and for all. Although if you are a Wanderers’ fan in his/her 50’s, please don’t be offended.
I wrote earlier in the season about the potential shortcomings in the EFL coming down so hard on Bolton & Bury for sporting integrity purposes. It seems as though the all-important integrity of League One became less of an issue for clubs when they were able to vote on their own survival. Of course by this point Bolton were likely just choosing how it happened, devoid of all hope and happiness.
As for next season, I wouldn’t say I’m hopeful as I’ve learned not to want things as life will crumble all your dreams to dust. However, there will be an expectation, quite rightly, that Wanderers will be up there come the end of the season. The planning must start now and big decisions that need making, should be made without hesitation. We cannot go into next season with any loose ends. Last season was a capitulation and the only real positive is we that have managed to come out of it with our EFL membership. If players want to go, let them go, there will be plenty of players at this level who fancy playing at Bolton.
Hopefully the new season kicks off sooner rather than later and I’m sure between now and then we will be treated to another 60 concept kits ...