Bolton's league position surprises Millwall boss

Karleigh Osborne (above) is set to miss out on the Bolton game. PICTURE BY EDMUND BOYDEN.

Karleigh Osborne (above) is set to miss out on the Bolton game. PICTURE BY EDMUND BOYDEN.

First published in Latest Sport This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , sports editor

MILLWALL manager Kenny Jackett is surprised by Bolton’s lowly position in the table going into this weekend’s meeting between the two sides at The Den.

Owen Coyle’s side were expected by many to be challenging for an instant return to the Premier League after last season’s relegation.

But instead they find themselves 16th in the table and Millwall could draw level with them on points should the Lions win on Saturday.

Jackett said: “I’ve just watched their DVD and they’ve played very well against Leeds on Tuesday but I think maybe there is quite a bit of pressure on them.

“When you look at their team it is hard to see why they have struggled when they’ve got so many strong players in their line up.”

Millwall go into the game on the back of two draws on the road at Burnley and Bristol City, the latest coming from Tuesday’s 1-1 result at Ashton Gate.

If Jackett’s side do beat Bolton then a five-point haul from a busy week will be considered a useful return, a suggestion the manager agreed with.

“That’s what we have to do and we have to capitalise on the draws away by getting our home form right,” he said.

“They were two losses against Cardiff and Brighton in the last two home games, which was disappointing.

“We have to put that right and we have an opportunity to do so on Saturday.

“I thought a draw at Bristol City was about right because it was an even game.

“We had a good finish and chances where we had a flurry of corners in the last five minutes and a chance or two for Keogh and Henderson.

“But overall it was better for us defensively, one against is more competitive for us and overall it was a hard earned point.”

Bristol City’s opener came in bizarre circumstances when Steve Davies headed home from 30 yards after keeper David Forde came out of his area to head the danger clear.

“It has gone right to their guy,” said Jackett.

“David Forde has come out, made a decision and taken responsibility, it has gone right to him and it is a good header over the top from Davies.

“I don’t think the forward would have necessarily got there, maybe Shane Lowry was in a good position to cover anyway.

“But it is tough to stop everything and hard be critical of that particular goal.”

Millwall will be without Karleigh Osborne for Saturday’s Bolton game after he failed to shake off a calf injury in time for the Trotters clash.

“I don’t think he will make it, it is more likely to be the Crystal Palace game after the international break now,” added Jackett.

But the forecast for skipper Paul Robinson is not so promising after his injury-plagued start to the campaign was blighted again by groin and stomach problems.

The Lions boss said: “Our medical people are reviewing it and seeing where we go from here because it has been a frustrating time for him where he has had two games and had to come off in both of them at Hull and Burnley.

“As it stands at the moment he is not fit to play.”

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