Replicating Sir Alex – Bolton Style – Episode Fourteen | @KibworthBull

It’s the final countdown..

Da La La La, La La La Laaaaa….

Yeah, you get the idea. The last 13 games of our first season back in the Premier League and it’s a case of we can relax and try and finish as high as we can. We are on 40 points so relegation is not happening. We also have the Quarter Final of the FA Cup, and we are amongst the favourites.

Alex Notman has had a fairly quiet season, but the first half hour against Barnsley demonstrated exactly what he can do.

A disappointing attendance but a very good display and we have a semi (snigger…). The Frenchman doing his thing. Izzy Rankin is fit again.

Whoever gets through will play a Division One side in the eventual final. I’d prefer Man United as we wouldn’t stand a chance, the hope that we could beat Barnsley would be too much.

If you popped to the loo in the 29th minute, you missed quite a bit. Two players off for handball in the same game. Big Slav’s first for the club.

An odd game. We dominated. But got stuffed. Man United were a wounded animal after being dumped out of the FA Cup by Barnsley. We led for an amazing 13 minutes.

Fish, Pedersen and Warner suspended. Osorio injured. No problem for our boys. Tom Youngs is nearly a forgotten man, but this goal was a rocket.

We will have better days. A big semi in a few days and minds were elsewhere.

A heck of a lot more nervy than the league game was but Bolton are through to the FA Cup final for the first time since 1957-58 and we will face Queens Park Rangers.

Tripe first half. Decent Second. We very much could have won this but Newcastle (2nd) show why they are pushing for the title. Izzy Rankin get’s back on the scoresheet for the first time since his injury.

Izzy scores but the flag is raised, within moments Derby score twice. What I said to the Lino cannot be repeated on a family show…

Our league form is decidedly ropey at the moment. Eyes on Wembley most likely. We lead twice against the Boro but fail to hold one.

Arsenal have too much for us. It’s another tired display.

Coventry are fighting like beavers at the bottom of the table. Osorio breaks hearts late on. Our first league win in a while.

The first time Liverpool beat us. The mis-spelt Ukrainian does the damage.

The final league game before the cup final. The nerves are real people.

We don’t show it. I hope we’ve left some goals in the tank.

The QPR keeper takes out Rankin, last man, gets a booking and then saves the penalty. Unbelievable. Nic rescues a draw and we will go again in a few days time.

The replay is at the Reebok – weird… we offer nothing. If only the referee had made the right call in the first game. If only we could beat a Division One side – across two attempts.

As if with all bone crushingly disappointing results, it is now a few days later and I’ve calmed down a bit and can assess the squad with rational insight and not blame the f******* ******* ******* of an excuse of an ******** referee..

Okay. Might need a couple more days.

It was a fantastic season. Hitoto and Osorio both were class. Nicky Spink is developing into a World Class keeper – on the cusp of the England squad and only 20. Mark Fish and Sol Campbell were good enough at the back.

From a schoolboy point of view, we’ve got Spink alongside Spencer Hewlett (RB), Marlon Warner and Graham Babb (both MC) – all 3 were regulars and were afforded the chance to develop and play, if slightly poorly at times. They will improve through the experience.

Up top both Anelka and Rankin got 14.

I think there is an element of a rebuild needed. Henchoz hasn’t had a work permit for two seasons so needs to be released, Harford and Martindale probably haven’t done enough but we’ll see. Le Tissier has retired, James is 3rd choice and can be moved on.

I need 2 Centre Backs, probably a Right Back, something in Midfield and something up top. Plenty to do.

I want a trophy.

At the end of season do, Nicky Spink gets his rewards.

So close but yet so far to being off and running. It’s the manner of the defeat that still rankles.

Ah well…

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