Coyle demands Bolton response

BY foxsports • May 13, 2011

Ian Holloway's side know three points against their Lancashire rivals are virtually essential if they are to escape relegation from the Premier League, with a trip to Old Trafford to come on the final day of the season. And now would appear to be a very good time to play Bolton, who are certain to finish in mid-table and have lost their last three games, as well as four successive matches away from home. Last week brought a last-gasp 2-1 loss at home to Sunderland, but Coyle said: "The mood is very positive because if you look at the Sunderland game we were terrific. We created enough chances to have won three games so there was so much to be pleased about. "The disappointment was that we lost a goal in the 94th minute, but the lads have been magnificent this season. "Now what we have to do is finish strongly and look to get as many points as we can in the last two games, recognising that Blackpool tomorrow will be fighting for their lives. "That alone would show they're very dangerous opponents, outside the fact they have the ability to go with that, as they've shown all season. So we know we're in for a tough afternoon. "It's a derby game, but that's what we like, we love games with a big atmosphere. Hopefully that will bring the best out of the players. "We're going to have to work ever so hard and match everything they bring in terms of their enthusiasm and their quality, but we've shown we can go toe to toe with the best, and that's what we have to do tomorrow." Blackpool's results and performances, particularly in the first half of the season, have earned Holloway many plaudits and survival would make him a strong candidate to be manager of the year. Coyle said: "I would suggest he would be in the running even if he didn't keep them up. Ollie's somebody I know well, somebody I've got so much time for, and Blackpool have been terrific. "He's done a magnificent job, as he did bringing them into the Barclays Premier League, and I know how difficult that is. No doubt he'll have his lads really motivated." Coyle insisted his side's struggles of late are not a hangover from their 5-0 thrashing by Stoke in the FA Cup semi-finals last month. "Ultimately in football people want to over-analyse and everything else but the bottom line is we went to the semi-final and we lost a game," the Scot said. "We bounced back against Arsenal (in a 2-1 win) and last week against Sunderland we were terrific. "In this league the margins are so fine, teams can lose a couple of games together, what you have to do is try to nip that in the bud and make sure it's not long term. We've got the opportunity tomorrow to win the game." Bolton will be without Mark Davies for the last two games of the season after the midfielder underwent an ankle operation yesterday to remove bone fragments. Coyle said: "We tried some steroid injections but they've not worked so I felt it was important we addressed it now and it wasn't carrying on into the close season. By doing that we'll have him fit and available for the start of pre-season. "We do have three or four players who are playing through the pain barrier for us because of the size of squad we have, and that's what we have to do. "We'd love to be able to sit here and say we'll play a load of kids but, with Blackpool fighting for their lives, we have to put as strong a team out as we can, and that's what we'll do."

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