City begin their Leasing.com Trophy campaign this evening against Sky Bet League One side Bolton Wanderers.
The Bantams face Wanderers for the first time since 2017, with the last trip being a 0-0 draw against Phil Parkinson’s men.
Both sides look vastly different from the teams who played that September afternoon, having enjoured difficult periods since.
But with both now looking to bounce back, we have compiled an Opposition Guide, where you can get all the information you need on this evening’s opponents…
SUMMER TRANSFER ACTIVITY
It has been a summer of uncertainty for Bolton, who, up until August 28, did not know whether they would be able to bring in any further additions. Football Ventures’ takeover, followed by the appointment of Keith Hill, set the whites up for a late flurry of transfer activity, with nine players arriving on transfer deadline day.
Ins: Josh Emmanuel (Ipswich), Daryl Murphy (Nottingham Forest), Ali Crawford (Doncaster Rovers), Joe Bunney (Northampton), Chris O’Grady (Oldham), James Weir (Hull City), Thibaud Verlindon (Stoke), Josh Earl (Preston North End), Jake Wright (Sheffield United), Liam Bridcutt (Nottingham Forest).
Outs: Jake Turner (Newcastle), Mark Little (Bristol Rovers), Erhun Oztumer (Charlton), Pawel Olkowski (Gazisehir), Josh Vela (Hibernian), Joe Pritchard (Accrington Stanley), Craig Noone (Melbourne City), Ben Amos (Charlton), Mark Beevers (Peterborough), David Wheater (Oldham), Clayton Donaldson (Bradford City), Sammy Ameobi (Nottingham Forest), Josh Magennis (Hull City), Ben Williams (Released), Marc Wilson (Released), Andrew Taylor (Released), Gary O’Neil (Released), Chiori Johnson (Rleased), Lloyd Dyer (Released).
ONES TO WATCH
City fans will be familiar with the former Leeds United midfielder, after his sending off in a 2-1 League Cup victory for the Bantams in 2014. But Murphy is also an experienced professional around the Football League, having joined Wanderers in 2018 from Leeds United.
He offers an experienced head in midfielder to a side who, so far, have been forced to use youth. The 29-year-old could keep his place from Saturday’s defeat to Gillingham.
Another experienced professional, having made his debut back in 2004 for Lincoln City. The 31-year-old joined Bolton last year and, despite his contract expiring this summer, re-joined the club following the takeover announcement.
An England under-19 representative, he earned an early move to Premier League Liverpool. After spending time at Leicester City, Hull City and Nottingham Forest, the central defender adds calmness to a young back four.
The former Manchester United youngster joined up with the Whites this summer, following his departure from Sky Bet Championship side Hull City.
He made his Premier League debut from the bench, in a 3-2 Old Trafford victory over Arsenal. After sealing a one-year deal at the University of Bolton Stadium, the midfielder has started all five of the games since.
Hometown hero Harry Brockbank was released following the end of his contract in June, but resigned in July, amid interest from Burnley and Sunderland.
The 20-year-old right-back was given the captaincy by club captain and, against all odds, led his side to a 0-0 season opener against Coventry City.
Keith Hill has only been in charge of his hometown club since August 31st, facing the media for the first time this morning alongside long-term colleague and assistant manager David Flitcroft.
Hill, who was born in Bolton, has previously had two managerial spells at Rochdale, with a stint at Barnsley sandwiched in between.
His task is to try fight against relegation to League Two, starting a near-impossible task as Bolton sit rock bottom of League One with -11 points.
However, the appointment has certainly garnered spirit around the town, and Hill is confident the Wanderers will fight it all the way.
Jason Lowe has kept the captaincy for the past four games, although it is unclear as yet as to who new boss Keith hill will appoint as his captain.
But with little changes expected this evening, Lowe is likely to keep the armband for at least the short term.
Lowe started his career at neighbour Blackburn Rovers, making nearly 200 league appearances. A season at Birmingham City followed, before joining up with Phil Parkinson’s side last summer.
LAST TIME OUT
In their previous fixture - on Saturday afternoon - Bolton were beaten 5-0 by Sky Bet League One opposition Gillingham.
Bolton Wanderers 0
Sky Bet League One
Saturday August 31st 2019
Bolton Wanderers: Remi Matthews, Harry Brockbank, Jack Hobbs (Sonny Graham 90+1’), Yoan Zouma, Jordan Boon, Luke Murphy, Jason Lowe, James Weir, Ronan Darcy (Callum King-Harmes 58’), Dennis Politic (Adam Senior 86’), Eddie Brown. Subs: Joe White, De’Marlio Brown-Sterling, Matthew Alexander.
Please note that City supporters are able to pay on the gate for tonight’s fixture, with tickets just £5 – including a complimentary matchday programme supplement and FREE parking.