Owen Coyle could do nothing wrong in the eyes of the Bolton supporters until last season’s FA Cup semi-final thrashing by Stoke. Since then, Wanderers have experienced a downturn in league form which has continued into the current season.
However, we should note that Bolton’s opponents to date have included Chelsea, Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool. The other two games saw the Trotters win 4-0 at QPR and lose 2-0 at home to Norwich so there is no need for panic yet.
Victory at the DW Stadium is likely to see them out of the bottom three and the visitors are 11/5 (Ladbrokes – £50 free bets) to claim victory against a Wigan side that also occupy a place in the relegation zone following a mediocre start to the season.
The Latics took five points from their three opening games against promoted teams, although four straight defeats have followed which suggests that Roberto Martinez will again have a job on his hands to keep the Lancashire side out of the drop zone by the end of the season.
It is vital for Wigan to pick up points in front of their own supporters, who have so far seen their team draw with Norwich, beat QPR and lose to Tottenham, with bet365 (£200 free betting) offering 5/4 that they heap further misery on their opponents who are currently rock bottom of the Premier League.
With both teams struggling for points, it is hard to feel too confident when backing either side and Bolton have really got to plug a leaky defence which has seen them ship 21 goals in six matches which includes a 5-1 home defeat by Chelsea last time out.
Coyle will be calling for his team to go back to basics, with Under 2.5 Goals on offer at 17/20 with bet365 and it is easy to see no quarter given in this Lancashire derby.