I like Bolton. There. I said it. Call me a big softie but I like the fact that we were promoted along with Bolton and Blackburn and we’ve all stayed up since. I hope that continues, despite a slightly rocky season for them both (and us earlier on). Also, Sean Davis is at Bolton now and I don’t think my love for him will ever fade so wherever he makes his home will have a little place in my heart… *sighs*
I also really like visiting the Reebok. I like driving up the motorway and seeing the floodlights on your right as you approach. It’s quite a unique structure compared to other grounds, it’s certainly easily identifiable even without the branding. The away fans area is enormous, especially when the last away trip was Villa which… ermmm… isn’t, there are good facilities (I’m talking toilets, it’s important) and the people are friendly. I’m starting to get fussy about which grounds I visit now but the Reebok is definitely high on the list for repeat visits.
Obviously yesterday’s trip was boosted by the team’s performance and the convincing manner in which we won. Bolton fans will have to blame one of the stewards for Dempsey’s second because as we were singing “we’re gonna score in a minute” he looked at me and said, smiling, “No you won’t”. Ahem. But I think we deserved to be 2-0 up going into the break.
Half time entertainment time. Zorbing. I’d love to do zorbing, it looks like excellent fun. I didn’t manage it but Billy was picked to represent the travelling fans and did quite well and got a medal for his troubles. Jealous.
More greatness in the second half. I was actually quite relaxed which is quite something when we’re winning away as usually I’m hiding behind my hands. There was too much going on though: Kacaklinic’s first start, in which he did himself proud; Trotta’s league debut; Diarra’s first goal for the Whites (first of many, I hope)…
BUT. There’s always a but when things start off this well and that’s the two things that marred yesterday. The home fans booed Bryan Ruiz as he was being treated and subsequently substituted off, and later there were reports of Bolton fans attacking the Fulham fans’ coach with a brick. Frustration and anger can manifest themselves in unpleasant ways but the actions of a small number of Bolton fans then reflect badly on the rest and that’s a shame because, by and large, they’re a good bunch.
I still hope I get the chance to go back next season though, and for many more after that. Next time I may even be able to find the McDonald’s nearby…