Preston vs Bolton – Championship :Preston hosts one of the last-place teams of this competition…
Going through a terrible period that was marked by a high number of injuries on the defensive line.
The team’s manager, Alex Neil, has stated he has never witnessed something like this in his entire career in football so the club’s difficulties at the moment are understandable.
After finishing last season in 11t place, with an average of 1.37 goals conceded per match, nobody was expecting many defensive improvements
but the truth is that they reached September 30th without conceding more than 1 goal in 10 matches, only conceding 4 goals during that period.
That’s when their injury problems started and Alex Neil’s club got into a streak of 6 matches without a single win, conceding, at least, 2 goals in every match.
Preston North End’s last 6 matches:
Preston 2-2 Sunderland
Fulham 2-2 Preston
Wolves 3-2 Preston
Preston 2-3 Brentford
Preston 0-2 Aston Villa
Ipswich 3-0 Preston
Quote from Alex Neill, Preston’s manager:
“The truth is that the only defenders currently available at the club are Kevin O’Connor, who played his first match tonight, Andy Boyle, who also made his debut this season, and Darnell Fisher”.
That’s what the coach said in November 2nd prior to the visit to Ipswich, where they ended up losing 3-0. They were a very tough team to
beat that had started the season with every condition to reach a play-off spot.
It ends up being unfair what the club has gone through and still they come into this match with a high amount of unavailable players, on a list that includes 7 defenders.
The striker Sean Maguire is the most recent victim of this “streak of bad luck” and will be out for 4 months. Jordan Hugill is suspended.
Quote from: Alex Neil, Preston North End’s manager:
“We have something like 7 defenders injured, which is an incredible amount, and now two of our 3 strikers are also out, so it is not pleasant for us, but that also bring opportunities to some others.
I’m excited for having some players who can go onto the pitch and show what they can do.
It is a good opportunity for them, who should be excited for it and as I’ve said they’ve practiced well during the week, so I’m looking forward to what they can show us now.”
After a disastrous start, Bolton seems to have been able to shake off their bad moment of form and come into this on a streak of 5 consecutive matches without losing that made them leave the bottom spot on the league table.
They currently occupy the 23rd place with 11 points gained, 10 points behind Preston, but that is much due to the first 11 round of the league, where they were only able to get 2 points.
They’ve conceded goals in 15 out of their 16 league matches played so far and with 29 goals conceded in total, I’d point more towards an upset in this round, if it wasn’t for the high number of injuries on the opposing side.
Quote from: Phil Parkinson, Bolton’s manager:
“The players are on a roll, or as much as possible, considering we are still on the bottom 3 spots on the league table. But we’re doing better when compared to the first 11 matches and we’re in a better spot, mentally”.
After getting rid of the pressure of getting their first victory, this team comes into this match with a lot more confidence to face their
rivals on the Lancashire derby.
Balance and few goals have been the trademarks of the encounters between these two teams on the past few seasons, but both teams come into this in a very different stage.
Offensively, this Bolton doesn’t present high numbers but they’ve scored in each of their last matches after 7 consecutive matches where they failed to score.
Facing a defensive line with 7 absences is positive, especially considering the moment of form they are on.
Preston vs Bolton – Betting Tip and Prediction:
In normal conditions, this would be a match where Preston North End was favoured but without 7 defenders, and with their 2 top strikers missing, I have no doubts that this is the best time to take advantage for the visitors.
The value presented by the bookmakers give Preston the favouritism and will focus to go against that.
I’m not looking towards the “Both teams to score” market due to the absences on the attack of the hosts, but since this is a derby, it is always likely that we will see a lot of goals.
|Bolton AH 0||