Bolton boo-boys need to accept Megson
EDITORIAL: Bolton's boo-boys need to leave their egos at the gate - or risk driving their club into the Championship.
There's a section of support which still feels burned by Phil Gartside's decision to ignore their protests and appoint Gary Megson almost two years ago. Megson feels there's nothing he can do to win them around, the players feel it too, and it's hurting the club.
The decision to appoint Megson - and to continue to back him - was not taken lightly by Gartside and Eddie Davies. Within the game, the Trotters manager enjoys an excellent reputation. He's a coach who makes good players better.
When he was between jobs, Megson was invited by Sir Alex Ferguson to work with his players at Manchester United. It's that same ability that Ferguson recognises which has Fabio Capello now considering several Bolton players for his England squad.
Over his two years in charge, Megson has rescued Bolton from almost certain relegation and guided them to a respectable 13th place finish last term - all the while quietly transforming the culture within.
Where under Sam Allardyce, with the likes of Jay-Jay Okocha and Youri Djorkaeff, Bolton leaned on experienced old pros and became known as a reviver of careers, Megson has introduced a different transfer policy.
Gary Cahill, Fabrice Muamba and Matty Taylor are now all being mentioned as genuine England candidates. Their market value has soared since arriving at the Reebok - and it's all happened under Megson. Bolton fans now have the prospect of seeing their lads running around for England - something unheard of in modern times.
And if there was any doubt from fans that the dressing room was not with the manager, then the re-signing of Kevin Davies and Jussi Jaaskelainen should have put that to bed. There was also the gesture from Cahill to write out the buyout clause in his previous contract and sign new terms last month.
Three defeats from the opening three games doesn't make good reading, especially when the work going on behind-the-scenes is largely ignored by the national media. The boo-boys should recognise what Megson is doing and rally behind him and the club.
For too long, Bolton have been battling against their own. It's now critical that the Bolton support recognise they have a very good manager in charge.
UEFA claiming England diver's paradise?
No Premiership fan likes diving.
And on the face of it, we all support the action by UEFA to charge Arsenal striker Eduardo for his fall against Celtic last week. But why is it an English club that is about to suffer? For all the diving and play-acting that goes on across Europe, it's curious that the first high-profile charge to be made is against a Premiership player.
The Premiership is the one league which refuses to accept diving and I am convinced UEFA are taking advantage of the honesty of Premiership leaders and the media in singling out Eduardo.
There's sure to be new cases in the first round of the Champions League. It'll be interesting to observe how UEFA handle it all.