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Feature

In Focus: Bolton Wanderers

10 June 2019

Name: Bolton Wanderers Football Club

Founded: 1877

Ground: The University of Bolton Stadium

Capacity: 28,723

Manager: Phil Parkinson

Last season: 23rd in the Sky Bet Championship (relegated)

Bolton Wanderers will begin the Sky Bet League One season with a 12-point deduction after going into administration at the end of their Sky Bet Championship relegation campaign.

The Trotters suffered a difficult year on and off the pitch, earning victories in just eight of their 46 outings which will see them return to the third-tier after two seasons at Sky Bet Championship level, finishing up with 32 points.

Coupled with ownership issues which saw Ken Anderson relinquish control of the Greater Manchester outfit after three-years as chairman, Bolton currently find themselves in administration and without an owner.

Despite winning three of their opening four fixtures, Bolton soon found themselves embroiled in a relegation battle and were relegated alongside Ipswich Town and Rotherham United – losing their final six matches to conclude the season second from bottom of the division.

Their penultimate match at home to Brentford was postponed after players went on strike over unpaid wages.

Wanderers’ form was identical both home and away – winning four at the University of Bolton Stadium, drawing four and losing 15 – while they shared the same record on their travels.

Managed by Chorley-born boss Phil Parkinson, the 2019/20 season is set to be another challenging one for Bolton as they navigate Sky Bet League One with a -12 start.

As a player, midfielder Parkinson began his career in Southampton’s youth system before leaving The Dell to make his Football League debut with Bury in 1988.

Over four-years with the Gigg Lane side, Parkinson made 145 appearances for the Shakers prior to signing for Reading in 1992 for £50,000.

Parkinson would see out the final 11-years of his playing days in Berkshire, becoming a cult hero at the Royals, winning promotion from the Second Division twice, in 1994 and 2002, making 361 league appearances in Berkshire.

In 2003, Parkinson moved into management with Colchester United, spending three-years with the Essex club, leading them to promotion to the Championship in 2006.

In June 2006, he was appointed as Hull City manager but lasted until the December of that year.

A further stint as boss at Charlton Athletic followed between 2008-2011 before moving back up North to take charge of Bradford in August 2011.

At Valley Parade, Parkinson led the Bantams to a League Cup Final against Swansea City and promotion from Sky Bet League Two in 2013 before they reached the FA Cup quarter-final two-years later, beating Chelsea and Sunderland along the way.

The 51-year-old linked up at Bolton in June 2016 and led the club back to the Sky Bet Championship in May 2017.

Tranmere Rovers will renew their North West rivalry with Bolton Wanderers, with Rovers set to face the Trotters in the league for the first time since 2001.

In total, TRFC have won 10, drawn 10 and lost 16 against Bolton.

The last fixture between the two sides was a League Cup tie in August 2013, with Tranmere winning on penalties after a 1-1 draw at Prenton Park. 


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