Bolton Wanderers v Cardiff City - Preview

  • November 03, 2012 | By Chris Mann
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The Dougie Freedman era begins at Bolton on Saturday evening when Wanderers play host to Cardiff City at the Reebok Stadium.

Having been officially unveiled as the successor to Owen Coyle at a press conference on Monday, the time for talking has come to an end and Freedman's first task is to mastermind victory over the Championship leaders.

Going into the weekend, Bolton occupy 18th position in the table and are 13 points behind their opponents, ahead of the first league meeting between the two sides since January 1990.

Bolton have no fresh injury concerns, with Stuart Holden, David Wheater, Josh Vela and Andy Lonergan the long-term absentees.

Freedman is expected to make changes to the side that lost at Middlesbrough last weekend, with the former Crystal Palace boss potentially opting for a chance in formation.

Stephen Warnock and Tyrone Mears should be confidence of retaining their roles in defence, but any two from Zat Knight, Tim Ream, Sam Ricketts and Matt Mills could be picked to start in the two central roles.

Keith Andrews found himself dropped to the bench under the interim management of Jimmy Phillips, but he could be set for a return alongside Jay Spearing in an anchor role.

Andrews may find it difficult to dislodge the likes of Martin Petrov, Lee Chung-Yong and Chris Eagles, although one member of that trio may drop to the bench in a tactical shuffle.

Kevin Davies is expected to lead the Wanderers attack, although Marvin Sordell has been identified as a potential threat by the new Bolton boss.

Cardiff remain without the services of Craig Bellamy and Tommy Smith, who remain on the sidelines with ankle and hamstring injuries, respectively.

Stephen McPhail is in contention for a return following injury, while Matthew Connolly could keep his place at right-back, at the expense of Kevin McNaughton.

Kerim Frei joined on loan from Fulham last week, but he is expected to be named on the bench, with Craig Noone continuing to impress in the absence of Bellamy.

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

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Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
19 Rochdale 34 36
20 AFC Wimbledon 35 35
21 Tranmere Rovers 34 32
22 Southend United 35 19
23 Bolton Wanderers 34 14
View Full Standings >>


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34.62% Gary O'Neil
19.38% David Wheater
18.92% Pawel Olkowski
9.27% Joe Williams
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2.85% Josh Magennis
2.75% Mark Beevers
1.19% Jack Hobbs
1.01% Ben Alnwick
0.28% Andrew Taylor
0.28% Craig Noone