Bolton Wanderers manager Keith Hill has paid tribute to the contribution of those players who remained with during the turbulent summer endured by the club, following their recent resurgent form.
After entering administration at the end of last season, Bolton were left with just a handful of senior players at the start of the campaign, although an influx of new players following the takeover of the club has led to an upturn in recent results, with Wanderers having ended a winless start to the season with three straight wins in all competitions.
Despite the impact of those new arrivals, Hill is under no illusions as to the importance of those players who stayed at the club following that relegation and administration at the end of last season, crediting them for leading by example to help overcome the problems encountered by the club recently.
So with Hill paying tribute to those who have been through the wringer with Bolton over the past year, we’ve taken a look at three players who can certainly feel proud of themselves following their manager’s recent comments.
One of those who was name-checked by Hill, Lowe has certainly had a big part to play since the start of the campaign.
The versatile 28-year-old has operated in a number of positions for Bolton this season, missing just one game so far in the entire campaign, leaving him with a big role to fill particularly in the early months, when a lack of other senior players forced Bolton to field a number of players from their youth teams in league action.
With the former Blackburn captain recently talking about the way he was able to draw on his past experiences coming through the youth ranks to help some of those young players at Bolton, it certainly seems as though Lowe’s recent contributions have extended beyond his individual performances.
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Another player to have been singled out by Hill, Matthews too is someone who has made a big contribution at the start of this season.
Having been heavily tested and regularly beaten during the early parted of his campaign behind a young and inexperienced defence, it does seem as though this recent upturn in results is just reward for Matthews perseverance, particularly with some of the big saves the goalkeeper has made to help secure those points.
With Matthews’ interaction with Bolton’s fans off the pitch also helping to keep morale up around the club, the goalkeeper who can be proud of the way he is helping Wanderers to slowly get back to their feet following their recent troubles.
It isn’t just the experienced players who have had a big part to play in Bolton’s resurgence recently, and Dennis Politic is perhaps the best example of that.
Having spent last season on loan at Salford City helping them to win promotion from the National League, the 19-year-old was one of those young players called up to Wanderers senior side at the start of August.
It is perhaps indicative of just how good Politic was during that period where he helped Bolton fulfil their fixtures in order to avoid further punishment from the EFL, that despite the recruitment of several more experienced and established players since then, the winger has continued to be a regular feature in Bolton’s squad, highlighting one unlikely benefit of the situation the club found themselves in at the start of the campaign.