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Bird's Eye View: Bolton Still Matters!

6 February 2013

Clarets Player commentator Phil Bird on all things football

Keep Applying the Pressure:

Saturday is a massive match. With 12 weeks of the season left we still have everything to play for.

We will be disappointed with only a point at London Road but it keeps us within four points of sixth spot.

Middlesbrough are in that last play-off spot and have lost their last four league games. It’s a miserable start to 2013 for Tony Mowbray’s side and we need to try and capitalise.
 
Owen Coyle may have left Bolton Wanderers but it’s still very much a grudge game for us. 

Bolton poached our entire managerial team in January 2010 - midway through our Premier League season. There is still bitterness. Burnley were the prey, Bolton the hunter.

We were told Wanderers were ten years ahead of the Clarets. My word, just three years down the line how stupid does that look now?  Be under no illusions, Saturday’s game means so much to every Claret fan.
 
I thought we were fantastic on the opening day when we beat Bolton at Turf Moor.


Happy days!

Goals from Martin Paterson and Charlie Austin gave us a dream start to the season. It wasn’t just the result, we played really well that day.

We all know how competitive the Championship is but I’m surprised that the relegated clubs, with all their resources, aren't higher up the league.

Indeed Wolves and Bolton stand just two and three points ahead of the relegation zone respectively. Surely there will be a Bolton revival, won't there? They still have the bulk of their squad from last year. We need to make sure that recovery doesn’t start anytime soon.

Paterson came on and made a difference at Peterborough. He grabbed the equaliser and came so close to a dramatic winner. Only a top save from Bobby Olejnik denied the former Stoke striker. It’s a reminder of what he can do. Sean Dyche will have taken note.

It’s great news that Ross Wallace has extended his stay at Turf Moor. He has been excellent under Dyche. Let us hope we are celebrating at the Reebok on Saturday with one of his trademark free-kicks!

Scolari's Return:

With England playing Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Brazil at Wembley on Wednesday night, it brought back memories of Big Phil’s spell in English football as manager of Chelsea.

Even though he won an amazing 20 of his 36 games in charge it still wasn’t good enough for owner Roman Abramovich. Significantly, when he was dismissed they were still in all competitions except one. Which one? You’ve guessed it! The Clarets knocked Scolari’s Chelsea out of the Carling Cup on a memorable night at Stamford Bridge.

 
Bridge too far for Phil

Stop Being Social!

Just a month ago it was announced that Bolton striker Marvin Sordell was receiving help for a possible "obsession" with social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook. 

So, just a few weeks later it seems strange that the website voiceofbolton.com are able to offer a prize in association with EA Games allowing lucky winners the chance to play Sordell on FIFA 13 online! The advertising blurb also adds: "You will also be able to chat with the Bolton hitman online whilst doing so!”
 
Everybody Wants to Change the Rules!

When you’re Sir Alex Ferguson the world listens. You will remember the controversial Jonny Evans own-goal in the game against Newcastle United at Old Trafford on Boxing Day when Papiss Cisse was flagged offside but didn't touch the ball. 

Well FIFA have had a look and are seeking clarification. They want rule 11 changing to “clearly obstructing an opponent’s vision or challenging an opponent for the ball.” I wonder if they are looking at deliberate handball with your arms by your side, mistaken identity or excessive force? I guess not!
 
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and not necessarily Burnley FC


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