Bolton Preview

A win this afternoon will put us back up to 9th position. It seems to me, looking at the league table that there are three leagues at the moment – the Top four, the next seven and the bottom nine. We need to cement our position in that middle group. In theory, this afternoon ought to provide us with that opportunity, but with a new manager, Bolton players will be looking to prove themselves. An early goal for us is a must, so we need to put them under pressure right from the start.

Our injury situation doesn’t seem to be getting any better and Carlton Cole may well start up front on his own again, unless Curbishley wants to give Camara another try. I suspect the team will look something likes this…

Green, Upson, Gabbidon, McCartney, Neill, Solano, Etherington, Noble, Mullins, Camara, Cole.


16 Responses to Bolton Preview

  1. Simon says:

    Usually you are right that the league table divides into groups, but a look at points per game shows a much more even spread with Arsenal (2.45) and ManU (2.25) ahead of Chelsea, Blackburn and City on 2, Liverpool (1.91) and Portsmouth (1.83). There is a small gap to Villa (1.68), Everton (1.58), Newcastle (1.55), then us on 1.4. The big gap is below us with Reading on 1.08 and the rest tailing steadily down to Derby 0n 0.5.
    A win today would put us level with Newcastle whereas a defeat would drop us to 1.27, so your comment about cementing our place is spot on!

  2. Plaistow54 says:

    Your team selection looks pretty right. Bolton are in a bit trouble but they played well against Villa. Away & without Anelka i expect us to win. Tricky game but. A bottom side who are wanting to improve. I think a win puts us to tenth above Newcastle. Even with all the injuries we still have a mid table competetive side. I reckon 2-0 us & Cole & Solano to keep improving.

  3. Betfair Kid says:

    Gutted with the result, should have held out for the win. They probably deserved something out of it though.

    I hope Mullins’ injury isn’t going to keep him out for long. Will that make it 10 players out now?

    On a positive note, I thought Solano fitted in quite well in central midfield. Made some decent passes but still seems to be struggling for fitness a bit.

    Thought Cole hassled well up front too, but was a bit disappointed with Boa Morte.

  4. new york says:

    agree with betfair that bolton deserved the point. davies header shud have made it 1-1 and with their 2 shots saved off the line,in some ways we re lucky not to have lost.
    we had many many chances to kill it off and didn t , and for that we paid the price. agree on solano- he had a very good game ,and even with a fully fit squad ,it would be hard to keep him out. Cole again delivered the goods . Boa Morte s performance summed up the match for me. He created a lot of chances, and found himself well within the bolton box often enough,but he did too little with all those opportunities .
    Given the luck we ve had recently against boro,sunderland ,portsmouth and even coventry , we can t complain about lack of luck this time . gutting tho it was to throw away 2 points in the 93 rd minute, it was only a matter of time before our “luck” caught up with us. given all the injuries ,i suppose a point ,especially against a team like bolton who we have struggled against in recent years ,is no disgrace,but it s dropped points like these that make the difference between finishing 6th or 7th and finishing somewhere between 10th and 12th. in theory, league tables don t lie,but i still don t view bolton as a 19th place side. that has got to be boro,fulham or birmingham instead.

  5. Keith R, Aylesbury Hammer says:

    Iain, your bit saying ‘…an early goal for us is a must, so we need to put them under pressure right from the start…’ was shown to be a strategy that we couldn’t cope with – seeing as we bottled it in the 93rd minute. The bright side was that we continued to play sportingly rather than hand-bag out the last half hour.
    LBM – please get a grip whilst Carlton seemingly had two blokes on him constantly. Lovely goal, George …cheers.

  6. new york says:

    great observation by aylesbury. yes we made a few sloppy passes in those final 30 minutes,but nobody can accuse of not trying to get the second goal to finish it off ,nor can anyone accuse of just putting 11 men behind the ball at that point and hoping for the best. we continued to play football and attack,which to me was positive and encouraging. what was discouraging ,was that we created enough so that the second goal ,which wud have killed it off,should have come very easily. yet somehow ,we contrived to fail to put it in the back of the net a second time ,despite having numerous opportunities to do so.

  7. Betfair Kid says:

    Cheers NY.

    Carlton has grown on me ever since he was subbed on against Middlesbrough to groans and boos, and then went and set up two goals. Keith, you’re right about the two men on him.

    If only Etherington had kept the ball in the corner rather than put it into the box. Well, at least it was more enjoyable than the 5-1 drubbing last season. I wonder if the scoreline might have been different if Anelka had been playing though?

  8. […] Bolton were lucky to sneaked away with 1 point from Upton Park when Kevin Nolan in the third minute of regulation time. Alan Curbishley was a mad man when Bolton scored as the equalizer which was a very soft goal indeed. West Ham took the lead in the first half when George McCartney scored in the 20th minute with a volley from his weaker right foot that left Jussi Jaaskelainen with no chance. […]

  9. squaretan says:

    Unlucky Hammers to concede the late late goal. Poor defending. Curbishley was a mad man when his team conceded the soft goal.

    For those of you who missed the highlights:-

  10. jon l.colney says:

    why oh why can we not sit on the ball in the corner flag ?

    curbs needs to drum it in to them that the last 10 minutes of a game when your winning you dont send everyone up front to score the second!!!

  11. phil says:

    Very disappointed at the end. Lost count of the number of times Etherington skinned them down the left but we wasted the opportunities.

  12. NunheadHammer says:

    I was at the game yesterday: two comments:
    1) Bolton were possibly the worst team I have seen for a very long time – how we didn’t beat them surprises me
    2) Bolton brought one of the lowest supports I have ever seen – a shocking disgrace

  13. media profile says:

    so most newspapers complained about the “dire” or “wretched” nature of the game.
    should that be a surprise ,now that bolton have reverted to form with their long ball, kick,bite and bollock manner of play? what exactly did the media expect from a match involving bolton,especially given their league position , and given that we ve been almost forced to play with only one up front due to all the injuries? were they naive enough to be expecting pretty football?

    this is a choice example of why west ham supporters regard the media with contempt.
    if you are that desperate to sell papers ,then find another product to sell.

  14. Plaistow54 says:

    Sometimes i wonder if i shouldn’t keep my mouth shut. They are the games where you come away with a sick feeling in the stomach even though we got a point. Curbs was frustrated, he lashed his arm out in disgust at the goal. Linda is a godsend, he gets better every game & at times i think is the only one with any bottle at all. We gotta learn to run the clock down in stead of waiting for the whistle hands in pockets. Bolton are desperate for points & would be stoked about an injury time goal. I reckon Curbs would’ve gone right off in the change room. Derby then Spurs & you would hope maximum points there, then three difficult games. The eternal optimist.

  15. EastHammer says:

    Why did he play Boa Morte when he has an out-and-out striker (Camara) on the bench? We were playing at home not away!

    Bolton deserved the draw.

  16. new york says:

    i don t like to fault etherington ,because he seems to put life into our attack, but as pointed out by a previous response ,why is it that he , or us ,can t run the ball towards the corner flag and keep it there? i think its great that for teh duration of the match we did try for teh second, but why, with 2 minutes to go , did we not think to keep the ball near that corner flag? why risk a cross that could cause us to lose possession not once, but twice?

    again, i don t like to fault him , as he had a good game, but as captain, is this not at least partly neill s responsibility as captain, to scream at players to use common sense with 2 minutes to go? or for that matter, curbishley? surely curbishley could have in some way gotten this message across as we were into stoppage time?

    you can t begrudge nolan or bolton their goal ,as they fought hard for it ,but that particular goal should have never happened. the two that we saved off the line i could have lived with, or the one that davies missed on 74 minutes. but the goal that nolan actually scored? it is absolute madness and was so avoidable. between this match and what happeneed in the home match vs spuds last season, i hope its clear to curbishley that we need to devote serious time at chadwell heath to dealing with these situations. we re not talking rocket science or high tech strategy here- we re talking basics, which should be within ourgrasp to sort out.

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