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Preview: Wigan Athletic vs Bolton Wanderers

Kevin Davies Bolton's danger man.
Kevin Davies Bolton's danger man.

Finally we are back after a very boring, as usual, international break. They are pointless for many, and usually end up with player injuries, or fatigue.

So going into the game against our local rivals, how are we and how are they shaping up? For what could and will be a very important relegation decider only three months into the new season.

Our recent record against Bolton has been for the most part boring. Many of the games in the past couple of years has ended in draws. However this year looks set to be one with goals. Bolton have scored and conceded a total of 30 goals so far this season, while Wigan have taken part in games with a total of 16 goals.

Latics will go into the game with, for the most part a full strength squad. Only long term doubts Antolin Alcaraz and Hugo Rodallega will miss the game, while Steve Gohuri returns from his one match suspension after two yellow cards against Tottenham.

Bolton will go into the game with the return of their Finish goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen, this will no doubt give a big boost to their defence. The 36 year old goalkeeper has been a rock in the nets for Bolton for many years now, and has been the envy of many clubs. His agility and communication make him one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League if not the world.

Bolton Wanderer's man to watch of the game, is of course the hard man Kevin Davies. The 6" striker, may not have the immense hight to out header defenders, but he can't half leap and hold the ball up. He has been since joining in 2003 been Bolton's spear head attacker.

Now I am not the biggest fan of Davies. He is for the most part a player opposition fans love to hate, and you can see why. His sheer determination to do well for Bolton makes him someone, that you are bound not to like. However you have to respect what he shows. He is one of few players who in this modern day of football shows loyalty to the football club and puts his body on the line for the fans.

So what is Davies game, well he can change it from game to game. He may play high up the line, hold the ball up for someone else to get into space and catch the other team off guard. Or he may play deep dropping in and out of play to give space to others and pick the ball up. 

So how do you stop him? You have to make sure one player has a continuous eye on him. Blocking off his runs, and then not getting sucked in to gather the ball up, when he is trying to create space.

How can I see the game going?

Well it could go one of many ways. As this season has shown you can't predict how teams will play. Form would dictate it will be a draw between the sides. However with home support and knowing that we need to win to keep Bolton in the drop, I can see Latics getting a win from the game.