Dougie Freedman is looking forward to the weekend’s trip to Nottingham Forest, buoyed by the return from injury of a number of first team players and last Saturday’s derby win.
Long-term absentees David Wheater, Stuart Holden and Mark Davies are all back in contention for the City Ground clash, while new recruit Medo Kamara will also travel.
Speaking at his Thursday press conference, the manager said: “Following the win against Burnley the players have been really lively this week. There’s been a great buzz about the place and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t put on another good performance this weekend.
“I’m very confident because I’ve got a lot of very good players to work with; the key to it is to keep them all happy. Some people describe it as a ‘selection headache’, but for me it’s the best feeling to have as a manager.
“To have the likes of Mark Davies, David Wheater and Stuart Holden all back in the squad for Saturday is great. Medo Kamara is probably lacking a bit of match fitness, but needs to be involved in some capacity. It’s now up to me to pick the best team for that particular game.”
Wanderers represent the first opponents of Billy Davies’ second reign as Forest boss. And while Freedman is aware of the effect a new manager can have on a team, he’s confident that Bolton will have more than one way to stop the hosts.
He said: “Nottingham Forest will represent a difficult test because they’ve got a new manager and when that happens there can sometimes be changes to a team’s line-up. Billy’s been there before so he understands how the crowd works, but I’ve been there as a player, so I know how things work too and I’ve got ideas about how to counteract that.
“I expect there to be a high tempo at the beginning of the game and I expect their crowd to be fully behind them. I know how we’re going to start the game, but we may need to react if Billy makes any late changes to his side.
“Tactically I will need to be on my toes because I may have to adjust my team, but we’re fully prepared with a ‘plan A’ and a ‘plan B’ depending on what Nottingham Forest put out.”