Bolton Wanderers V Watford - Preview

  • September 14, 2012 | By Chris Mann
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With the international break out of the way, Bolton return to Championship action on Saturday when they host Watford at the Reebok Stadium.

Wanderers have registered just four points from their opening four games of the season and with away games at Birmingham City and Sheffield Wednesday to follow in the next week, Owen Coyle will know that three points is a necessity for his side. Will Bolton register a win on Saturday? Put your money where your mouth is at bet365 football betting and follow the action with live football online.

Bolton have won each of the last four meetings with the Hornets, in a run that dates back to December 2000. The weekend's clash, however, will be their first meeting since February 2007, when a solitary strike from Nicolas Anelka gave the Trotters a 1-0 win at Vicarage Road.

Coyle has been boosted this week by the return of Bolton's international contingent, who have spent much of the last fortnight travelling the globe as they aim to help their respective countries qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Lee Chung-Yong, Tim Ream, Adam Bogdan and Sam Ricketts were all called-up for international duty, while Marvin Sordell and Gregg Wylde competed for England and Scotland's Under-21 sides, respectively, as they concluded their qualifying campaigns for the 2013 European Under 21 Championship.

All six of those players have reported back to training with a clean bill of health and are available for selection on Saturday afternoon.

One name that is also available for selection is David Ngog, who has recovered from a back injury he sustained in pre-season. With Kevin Davies likely to start in attack, Ngog faces competition from Sordell and Benik Afobe for a starting role, should Coyle opt to play with two up front.

Should he feature, Sordell will be lining up against his old club for the first time since joining Bolton from Watford on the final day of the January transfer window.

One bright point from Bolton's 3-1 defeat at Hull City last time out was the performance of Jay Spearing, who is on a season-long loan from Liverpool.

Spearing is expected to keep his place in the side, with Chris Eagles, Martin Petrov, Mark Davies and Chung-Yong also hoping to get the nod. Keith Andrews is fit again after pulling out of international duty for the Republic of Ireland after suffering an Achilles injury at the KC Stadium.

Adam Bogdan should start in goal, with Ricketts and Tyrone Mears filling in the full back positions. Matt Mills and Ream will both be hopeful of getting the nod to partner Zat Knight at the heart of the defence.

Watford boss Gianfranco Zola will have to do without the services of club captain John Eustace, who underwent a minor operation on a back injury during the week that has kept him out of the club's last four games.

Geoffrey Mujangi Bia and Prince Buaben are out with groin and thigh injuries, respectively, while Fitz Hall is a doubt after failing to recover from a slight injury. Alex Geijo is pushing for a first start after missing the start of the campaign with fitness problems of his own.

Bolton Wanderers: from: Bogdan, Lonergan, Lynch, Mears, Alonso, Mills, Ream, Knight, Ricketts, Riley, McKee, McQuade, Eagles, Andrews, Petrov, Wylde, M Davies, Spearing, Pratley, Chung-Yong, Blakeman, Ngog, K Davies, Afobe, Sordell, O'Halloran, Eaves, Sampson, Odelusi

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
12 Cheltenham Town 19 27
13 Accrington Stanley 20 27
14 Bolton Wanderers 20 26
15 Charlton Athletic 20 23
16 Cambridge United 20 23
View Full Standings >>


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