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Opposition view: Struggle for goals has left Bolton in big trouble

Ben Alnwick has been keeping Norwich City loan player Remi Matthews out of the Bolton side Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Ben Alnwick has been keeping Norwich City loan player Remi Matthews out of the Bolton side Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

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Ahead of today’s Carrow Road clash, Ed Skelly from Bolton fans’ website LionOfViennaSuite.com fills us in on what’s gone wrong for the Trotters ahead of their clash with league leaders Norwich.

One win in 16 games, is Phil Parkinson coming under pressure, despite doing so well to keep you up last season?

When the club are on a winless run like they are, questions are going to be asked of the manager. Phil Parkinson and his back-room team did a fantastic job keeping Wanderers up last season, given the fact that we started that year still under a transfer embargo. 
With the start we had this season, the best start at this level since 2000, fans expectations were slightly raised that the club would be better than relegation fodder. But since taking 10 points from four games, we’ve taken just eight from 16 games. It’s understandable that Parky is under pressure &and why a large section of fans feel it might be time for a new appointment.

What has been going wrong on the pitch recently?

Simply, we haven’t been scoring goals. In the last 16 games, we haven’t scored in 10 of them. The way Phil Parkinson sets up a side is to soak up pressure, score a quick goal on the break and try to defend the lead. 
However, we’ve been conceding early on a lot and with the way Parkinson sets up, it’s a struggle to try and salvage something from a losing position. The last time Wanderers came from behind to win was a 2-1 win against Northampton, at home over 18 months ago.

Bolton will be hoping Sammy Ameobi can make a difference at Carrow Road  Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images LtdBolton will be hoping Sammy Ameobi can make a difference at Carrow Road Picture: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd

Have any players been offering reasons for hope?

Sammy Ameobi always looks to be the player to make a difference, he can turn a game in Wanderers’ favour when he’s in form. Sadly, he’s quite inconsistent, so it’s not something we see often enough from him.

And which have been disappointing?

The squad’s form as a whole has dropped since the opening four games, aside from the win against Derby in September.

He’s unavailable for this game but how has Canaries loanee Yanic Wildschut been getting on? Would you like to sign him permanently?

He started brilliantly, scoring two winners in August. Since then, his form has been hit and miss, and has barely featured after being taken off at half-time in the 3-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest in October. If we saw the Wildschut from the opening games more often, it would be a no-brainer to sign him. But he’s been too inconsistent to have earned a permanent move.

Remi Matthews hasn’t featured too much since joining from City, do you like what you’ve seen of him?

When our first choice goalkeeper, Ben Alnwick, picked up an injury in September, Matthews was handed a chance in the league. He kept a clean sheet in the win against Derby and was praised for his distribution. Alnwick is first choice though and has been our most consistent performer, but I wouldn’t be against seeing Matthews given another chance.

Have you been surprised to see Norwich sitting top of the table in recent weeks?

Considering that you sold James Maddison to Leicester in the aummer and given the start they’ve had, it’s certainly a surprise to see them lead the league going into December. But it’s definitely deserved. Pukki has been an inspired signing and they’ve been playing some really great football whilst getting the results.

Will it be a case of Wanderers parking the bus at Carrow Road again, like last season’s 0-0?

With the form Norwich are in compared to Bolton, I just can’t see them keeping a clean sheet like last season.

And lastly, what’s your prediction for the game?

3-0 to Norwich. I just can’t see us getting anything from this game.

• Ed contributes to the lionofviennasuite.com Bolton fans’ website, which can also be found @lionofviennaste on Twitter.

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