Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle insists a couple of recent disappointing results does not mean their season has been a failure.
Bolton fans were left deflated by the comprehensive 5-0 FA Cup semi-final defeat their side suffered at the hands of Stoke City at Wembley two weekends ago.
Although they bounced back in the Premier League with a fine 2-1 win over Arsenal, Bolton went down 3-0 at Fulham in midweek.
But they travel to Blackburn Rovers on Saturday looking for the best possible end to the campaign.
“Our motivation is to finish the season as strongly as we can,” Coyle said on Friday.
“I never thought about getting into Europe, I just want to improve Bolton Wanderers from one season to the next.”
“I am flattered people thought we might qualify for Europe because we were favourites for relegation when I came into this job.”
“We were in the bottom three and for people to say we would do so well shows how much progress this club has made, having spent very little money.”
“There are huge clubs below us in the table who have spent over 20 million pounds so we are pleased with how the season has gone.”
“We now have to finish the season strongly then look for areas we can improve.”
Bolton will be shorn of a few players at Blackburn, but Coyle has done his best to patch up the side.
Those who are fit to play will know local bragging rights are at stake in this Lancashire derby.
“It’s fair to say that we will be short of numbers but the ones that are fit and available will be doing everything in their power to win a local derby,” he said.
“Mark Davies will have a scan on his ankle. He had a few problems last season but this year he had been doing ever so well, up until he turned it late on at Birmingham.”
“He hasn’t been right since and hasn’t felt quite 100 percent. We want to get to the bottom of it and nip it in the bud so that it is sorted out properly. Hopefully it won’t be too bad.”
“Unfortunately, Daniel Sturridge wasn’t quite fit for Fulham but he has responded to treatment – he will be touch and go. We don’t do anything detrimental to Daniel and we need to show consideration to his parent club Chelsea who have loaned him to us.”
“We have to do what is right by everybody. Yes we want him fit and available because he has been sensational for us, but we need to look at the bigger picture.”
“Gretar Steinsson is a big doubt. He has jarred his knee and at this moment I would say that it will be highly unlikely he will play at Blackburn. But he is the type of lad to play through the pain barrier, so we will wait until the last moment and take it from there.”
Defender Sam Ricketts (Achilles) and midfielders Sean Davis and Stuart Holden (both knee) will definitely not play.
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