Bolton Wanderers attacker Joe Dodoo says he is happy for the club to be favourites for their FA Cup clash with League Two Plymouth on Saturday, claiming he has never felt like an ‘underdog’ during his time at the club.
Dodoo joined Wanderers in September with the club bottom of the League One standings following their 12 point deduction for entering administration earlier in the year.
Although the Trotters are still rooted to the foot of the League One table, a run of three straight wins in all competitions has given rise to new expectations around the club.
Do you give Bolton any chance of surviving in League One this season?
That is something that will be carried over into their cup tie at the weekend, although it seems Dodoo believes the favourites tag ought to be nothing new for his side, as he told The Bolton News: “To be honest when you look around the changing room and train with these players, I have never felt like an underdog. It’s just circumstances that have put us where we are.
“We are a very good team. I always look at us as favourites because nobody sees how hard we work.”
Reflecting on the way Bolton’s new group of players has performed recently, Dodoo is clearly brimming with confidence, despite admitting they are not yet the finished article, with the attacker adding: “We’ve had 12, 13, 14 new players.
“Every day we’re learning something different about each other so it’s still a work in progress but it doesn’t worry me to go into Saturday as the favourite, because I believe we will win any game at the moment.”
Dodoo has yet to score in his five appearances for Bolton this season, and while he is aware that results are more important, the 24-year-old admitted he would love to break his duck for Wanderers in the FA Cup this weekend, as he concluded: “The competition is special, there’s always a different feel about it, anything can happen.
“I always look forward to cup games because I’ve got good memories, goals, it’s the competition that brought me to the scene.
“The goals will come. So long as I create then I don’t mind. As long as we’re winning games I don’t care.”
I think Dodoo is pretty much spot on here.
When you look at the teams Bolton have taken points off this season, drawing with Coventry, Oxford, Sunderland and Blackpool and beating Bristol Rovers and Fleetwood, they are all sides who are currently competing in the top half of the table.
As a result, I don’t think you can argue with the suggestion that Bolton can compete with anyone at this level, which should give them plenty of confidence as they look to pull off an unlikely great escape this season.
With regards to Dodoo himself, while the fact that he isn’t finding the net at the minute may be frustrating for him, his performances since arriving at Bolton have certainly been impressive, and if he can continue to contribute to their resurgence, then there are unlikely to be too many who are concerned with his individual goals return.