FourFourTwo in their pre-season supplement asked me who’d I’d like Blackpool to beat most this season. The answer was Bolton, at the Reebok.
And here it is. The Seasiders travel to Bolton on Saturday, followed by 5,000 supporters, looking for their fourth win on the road this season.
The sparkling form away from Bloomfield Road sees Pool lie in 12th – just four points off a European place.
But the game marks the first league meeting between the two sides for nearly two decades. Hopefully unsavoury scenes from the past won’t remerge surrounding the death of Kevin Olsson.
On the pitch, the game should be an absolute cracker. Wanderers under Owen Coyle look a formidable force whilst Holloway’s Pool side always entertain and score goals.
Holloway on Marlon Harewood being ruled out for six weeks: ‘I wanted it to be competitive at the end of training and it went on too long. It was my fault.
‘I’m in the doghouse from the physio. How long is Marlon likely to be out for? Five or six weeks.’
On the Bolton front, Owen Coyle has said that he is ‘very comfortable’ with the transfer saga that surrounds striker Johan Elmander, who has been in magnificent scoring form so far this campaign.
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Lee Chung-yong has signed a new three-year deal and is expected to start, alongside Fabrice Muamba and Martin Petrov, although the latter could be made to wait on the bench whilst Matt Taylor operates on the left.
Kevin Davies and Elmander has been fruitful up front recently and I can’t see that starting pairing changing.
Player to watch: Johan Elmander
After a slow start to life with Bolton, Elmander has been banging in goals for fun this season.
The Swede has notched eight already, meaning Craig Cathcart and Ian Evatt will need to be on their toes throughout.
Blackpool Team News:
Ishmel and Ash Eastham have finalised loan moves to Dagenham and Carlisle respectively.
Marlon Harewood was injured in training and will miss December.
Dekel Keinan, Brett Ormerod, Jason Euell and David Carney all got a thorough run-out in the reserves on Wednesday, but none are likely to start.
Ludovic Sylvestre is however pushing for a starting berth, with Gary Taylor-Fletcher seemingly close to being dropped.
Player to watch: Charlie Adam
After winning his case against the club in midweek, rumours are circulating that Adam is looking for a move away.
Whilst this is likely to be untrue, it perhaps needs a captain’s performance on Saturday.
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Saturday December 4th.
Manchester United (H)