Preview: Five talking points ahead of FC Halifax Town vs Bolton Wanderers

Wanderers continue their pre-season preparations with a trip to West Yorkshire to take on Vanarama National League outfit FC Halifax Town at the MBi Shay Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

1. First team back in action

Following last weekend’s postponement at St. Mirren, a Wanderers XI made up largely of Under-23s players and trialists were held to a 1-1 draw at Atherton Collieries on Tuesday evening, and this weekend the first team will get their first official run-out of pre-season at FC Halifax Town on Saturday afternoon.

Phil Parkinson will take his team to the MBi Shay Stadium to take on the Yorkshire side, who managed to retain their place in the Vanarama National League last season.

2. New faces

So far this summer, four new faces have been brought in and added to the Wanderers squad. Jason Lowe, Erhun Oztumer and Clayton Donaldson could well be involved at some stage in tomorrow’s friendly clash at FC Halifax Town.

Lowe, a defensive midfielder, arrives after leaving Birmingham City; Oztumer is a creative midfielder with an eye for goal who arrives after two seasons at Walsall and Donaldson is an experienced forward who is about to enter his fifth successive season at this level and was with Sheffield United last season.

Phil Parkinson made former FC Köln defender Pawel Olkowski his fourth summer acquisition, but this weekend’s clash may come too soon for the Poland international whose time on the training ground has been limited since his arrival in the country on Thursday.

3. Key details

Tomorrow’s game will kick-off at 3.00pm. Entry into the stadium will not require pre-purchasing of a ticket with payments accepted on the turnstiles. Ticket pricing is as follows: Adults: £12. Concessions: £10. Children (Under-12s): Free of Charge. Gates open at 2pm and there is plenty of parking on site, at £5 per car.

4. First of two trips to West Yorkshire

The squad will be crossing the border into West Yorkshire this weekend and it won’t be the last time during the pre-season schedule. Ten days after playing out Saturday’s pre-season friendly against the Shaymen, Wanderers will be back in the county to take on Guiseley of the Vanarama National League North – just 17 miles separate the two non-league clubs.

5. Ex-Wanderers

Newly appointed this summer, Town are managed by former Wanderers Under-21s Manager Jamie Fullarton, who also made one appearance as a player for the club, on loan from Crystal Palace in 1999. The Scot spent just over two years with the club during Dougie Freedman’s tenure as first team manager.

On the pitch, this weekend’s opponents also have two former Wanderers players on their books. Manchester-born academy graduate Niall Maher made 5 appearances for the club in April 2014 before a move to Bury. The defender went onto have spells at Galway United and Telford United before signing for FC Halifax Town in March 2018.

Along with Maher, Sanmi Odelusi is now plying his trade with the Shaymen after signing in June 2018. A graduate of the Wanderers academy, the Dagenham-born winger made 9 appearances for the club before a move to Wigan Athletic, and since leaving the DW Stadium in August 2017, he has had stints with Rochdale, Blackpool, Colchester United and Cheltenham Town.

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