Bolton Wanderers boss Dougie Freedman calls for fans to back team

Dougie Freedman

Dougie Freedman

First published in Sport
Last updated
The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , chief football writer

DOUGIE Freedman is quite prepared to play ‘the bad guy’ and bear the brunt of criticism for Wanderers’ poor start – but he has asked the boo-boys to lay-off his players.

Frustration is building after four winless games at the start of the Championship season and many fans are holding the manager accountable for his side’s failures on the pitch.

The likes of Jermaine Beckford and Liam Trotter have come in for stick at times on the terraces too – prompting Freedman to send out a message ahead of today’s clash with Leeds United.

“Being the kind of striker that I was, people would boo me one week and cheer me the next,” he said. “I learned to have a thick skin and cope with it.

“But I’m not okay with unfair criticism, people saying things just for the sake of it, or getting on the back of players.

“If younger players see that, they think ‘that could be me’ and it doesn’t do them any good at all.”

Today’s game could be a defining one for Freedman, who will desperately want to avoid going into the international break with his side still in the bottom three.

Victory at Elland Road should give the Scot some breathing space and a chance to ease a growing injury list.

Mark Davies, Dean Moxey and Kevin McNaughton were ruled out by the Whites boss yesterday, alongside Trotter, whose hamstring injury is worse than first feared and will now mean he misses at least two months of action.

Freedman spoke to The Bolton News exclusively on Friday to try and answer some of the growing concerns readers have about the direction the club is heading.

“I’m not saying I enjoy the situation we’re in,” he said. “I don’t want to be asked the questions you’re asking me each week about whether I’ll still be here – but you’ve got a job to do.

“And the fans are entitled to their say because they pay money into the football club. But if you sit back and have a little look at the big picture, 10-15 years in the Premier League and the money spent on huge, huge wages, and they are still getting paid. So it’s very difficult for me to wheel and deal.

“I do think I have got an eye for a player and if you look at the loan players who’ve worn a Bolton shirt in the last couple of years, there are quite a few now playing in the Premier League.

“When you’re the manager, that’s the way it goes. I’ve been in football a long, long time. I took charge of a football club at 35 and I have experienced a lot of flak and learned to understand the frustrations.

“But what you won’t see here is anyone giving up or throwing in the towel.

“This place will be run professionally, on the pitch, on the training ground, and that will never change while I am here.

“The players are giving it all they have got, so I can’t do anything more.

“This is hard on everyone and sometimes you don’t get the rewards of working as hard as the staff are at the moment. But we can’t do any more."

Comments (23)

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8:50am Sat 30 Aug 14

idav_uk says...

Bloody hell. There's only one of us left? Things are worse than I thought.
Bloody hell. There's only one of us left? Things are worse than I thought. idav_uk
  • Score: 0

10:42am Sat 30 Aug 14

prestonexile says...

The style of football most other teams play in the Championship is streets ahead of the Wanderers. The passing and movement is leaving us looking like donkeys, and we have been totally outclassed in every match, even by the likes of Bury and Crewe. The quality of a team can be judged by it's off the ball movement and anticipation, and we don't have any. Dougie sets the style and picks the team so he has to bear responsibility for the shambles. However the players might not be capable of playing anything other than a backs to the wall kick and rush game. This is the poorest Wanderers side since the 80s but at least they had some fighting spirit. Relegation looks a certainty without a radical change.
The style of football most other teams play in the Championship is streets ahead of the Wanderers. The passing and movement is leaving us looking like donkeys, and we have been totally outclassed in every match, even by the likes of Bury and Crewe. The quality of a team can be judged by it's off the ball movement and anticipation, and we don't have any. Dougie sets the style and picks the team so he has to bear responsibility for the shambles. However the players might not be capable of playing anything other than a backs to the wall kick and rush game. This is the poorest Wanderers side since the 80s but at least they had some fighting spirit. Relegation looks a certainty without a radical change. prestonexile
  • Score: 37

10:55am Sat 30 Aug 14

Liamdog says...

DF. You make 3 points in your interview and all are clear as mud, 1, we spent 10-15 years in the premiership and are still paying huge wages. Who too??? And what sort of contract did they have !? 2,you have an eye for a player ! Really ! Even if you did, them playing in the premier league for someone else is no good to BWFC ! 3, I have been in football a long time, and you have achieved what as a manager ?
DF. You make 3 points in your interview and all are clear as mud, 1, we spent 10-15 years in the premiership and are still paying huge wages. Who too??? And what sort of contract did they have !? 2,you have an eye for a player ! Really ! Even if you did, them playing in the premier league for someone else is no good to BWFC ! 3, I have been in football a long time, and you have achieved what as a manager ? Liamdog
  • Score: 25

11:09am Sat 30 Aug 14

swager123 says...

The only thing i want to back Douglas is you getting the sack !!
The only thing i want to back Douglas is you getting the sack !! swager123
  • Score: 18

11:39am Sat 30 Aug 14

Djorkaeff's right peg says...

Come on OriginalAngryDad! We need to get behind the whites!

Are you in? lmao
Come on OriginalAngryDad! We need to get behind the whites! Are you in? lmao Djorkaeff's right peg
  • Score: -11

12:00pm Sat 30 Aug 14

Mallorca Trotter says...

If we are moving on the people that cost us a fortune in the Premiership & failed to keep us there, why is Phil Gartside still employed by the club?

The players had themselves to worry about when it came to wages, & the other clubs got as much as they could in transfer fees.

But you Gartside, was supposed to be putting BWFC first. Clubs get relegated, I accept that. But the debt & cheques you & Eddie signed have broken this club right down the middle. That is unforgivable.

Stick Freedman on garden leave & let Jimmy have the season til Freedman's contract runs down. THEN make a decision.
If we are moving on the people that cost us a fortune in the Premiership & failed to keep us there, why is Phil Gartside still employed by the club? The players had themselves to worry about when it came to wages, & the other clubs got as much as they could in transfer fees. But you Gartside, was supposed to be putting BWFC first. Clubs get relegated, I accept that. But the debt & cheques you & Eddie signed have broken this club right down the middle. That is unforgivable. Stick Freedman on garden leave & let Jimmy have the season til Freedman's contract runs down. THEN make a decision. Mallorca Trotter
  • Score: 19

12:07pm Sat 30 Aug 14

Whites64 says...

DF says he has an eye for a player, lets think:
DF pays £300k for Craig Davies and then sends him out on loan to Preston for a year - presumably he thought we had better strikers at the club
Remember Butterfield/Butterwo
rth oir whatever he was called.
DF was going to 'build a team around Eagles'
Liam Trotter - if ever a player was aptly named.
Selects Pratley (another player well named) ahead of almost anyone else if he's fit - bags of effort but to no effect.
DF obviously doesn't think Chungy is good enough to get in the team on a regular basis - one of the few players we have with skill and guile.
In the last game of the 2012/2013 season when a win would have put us in the play offs DF plays Tom Eaves ahead of Kevin Davies - DF then does not consider Eaves good enough to play for us again. He then brings on Rob Hall as a sub - DF then rarely plays Hall for the whole of the following season. DF can clearly pick winners in vital games.
Sends Joe Riley out on loan - DF obviously he thinks Threlkald better as cover for McNaughton.
DF says he has an eye for a player, lets think: DF pays £300k for Craig Davies and then sends him out on loan to Preston for a year - presumably he thought we had better strikers at the club Remember Butterfield/Butterwo rth oir whatever he was called. DF was going to 'build a team around Eagles' Liam Trotter - if ever a player was aptly named. Selects Pratley (another player well named) ahead of almost anyone else if he's fit - bags of effort but to no effect. DF obviously doesn't think Chungy is good enough to get in the team on a regular basis - one of the few players we have with skill and guile. In the last game of the 2012/2013 season when a win would have put us in the play offs DF plays Tom Eaves ahead of Kevin Davies - DF then does not consider Eaves good enough to play for us again. He then brings on Rob Hall as a sub - DF then rarely plays Hall for the whole of the following season. DF can clearly pick winners in vital games. Sends Joe Riley out on loan - DF obviously he thinks Threlkald better as cover for McNaughton. Whites64
  • Score: 26

12:08pm Sat 30 Aug 14

nickyboy70 says...

I have stood by df from the start. but now my patience have finally run out. I agree will every one else now df must go now before its to late. put jimmy Phillips and david lee in charge for now as the under 21s are doing better than the first team. fat gartside needs to go and eddie davis need to get the moth balls out of his wallet we are never going to be able to give him his money back if we start tumbling down the tables. donna and nick from blackpool
I have stood by df from the start. but now my patience have finally run out. I agree will every one else now df must go now before its to late. put jimmy Phillips and david lee in charge for now as the under 21s are doing better than the first team. fat gartside needs to go and eddie davis need to get the moth balls out of his wallet we are never going to be able to give him his money back if we start tumbling down the tables. donna and nick from blackpool nickyboy70
  • Score: 14

12:57pm Sat 30 Aug 14

nickyboy70 says...

all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.
all those who want df out and gartside out please say I. nickyboy70
  • Score: 16

1:14pm Sat 30 Aug 14

Say It As You See It says...

Its hard to back anyone when you have no confidence in them. Its typical Bolton Wanderers, promise the world when season tickets go on sale, then break them promises when they have been sold. We are the only club that cries about FFP. I wish the fans could have access to the clubs bank accounts 'cause something isnt right. They are happy to take our money, but wont reinvest in the team. If I wanted my money to help build hotels etc, I would of bought shares in Travel Lodge. The whole club is a joke from top to bottom.
Another little interesting stat here, regarding Freedman and having his own squad and league positions

2012/13- Squad inherited from Owen Coyle finished 7th
2013/14- Half Coyles squad, half Freedmans squad finished 14th
2014/15- Freedmans own squad, and the way its going we will finish 21st
Its hard to back anyone when you have no confidence in them. Its typical Bolton Wanderers, promise the world when season tickets go on sale, then break them promises when they have been sold. We are the only club that cries about FFP. I wish the fans could have access to the clubs bank accounts 'cause something isnt right. They are happy to take our money, but wont reinvest in the team. If I wanted my money to help build hotels etc, I would of bought shares in Travel Lodge. The whole club is a joke from top to bottom. Another little interesting stat here, regarding Freedman and having his own squad and league positions 2012/13- Squad inherited from Owen Coyle finished 7th 2013/14- Half Coyles squad, half Freedmans squad finished 14th 2014/15- Freedmans own squad, and the way its going we will finish 21st Say It As You See It
  • Score: 12

1:38pm Sat 30 Aug 14

dafkaren says...

Well,well,well those comments "none of the staff will throw in the towel but there is nothing more we can do"from DF in the above article is very very worrying.It sounds DF that you already have.
Well,well,well those comments "none of the staff will throw in the towel but there is nothing more we can do"from DF in the above article is very very worrying.It sounds DF that you already have. dafkaren
  • Score: 6

2:16pm Sat 30 Aug 14

Riggermortis says...

Dougie wants us to back the team but that's the problem we are not a team dougie we are a house of cards that you and gartside have built and you are making a habit of conning loyal supporters on a weekly basis ............go now before Leeds play us off the park!
Dougie wants us to back the team but that's the problem we are not a team dougie we are a house of cards that you and gartside have built and you are making a habit of conning loyal supporters on a weekly basis ............go now before Leeds play us off the park! Riggermortis
  • Score: 11

2:28pm Sat 30 Aug 14

North East Paul says...

These are worrying times for us in respect to who we could attract to the club if Freedman goes. But, I found myself in midweek feeling like I did at the end of Megson's reign, in wanting us to loose in order to get rid of Freedman. Surely somebody else could manage our club better with respect to tactics and spirit, these are his players, it's not knee jerk, it's time to judge.
These are worrying times for us in respect to who we could attract to the club if Freedman goes. But, I found myself in midweek feeling like I did at the end of Megson's reign, in wanting us to loose in order to get rid of Freedman. Surely somebody else could manage our club better with respect to tactics and spirit, these are his players, it's not knee jerk, it's time to judge. North East Paul
  • Score: 12

4:18pm Sat 30 Aug 14

clawhand says...

clown...........wors
e bolton manager and side since the phil neal days........had long enough clueless........FREE
DMAN AND GARTSIDE OUT........
clown...........wors e bolton manager and side since the phil neal days........had long enough clueless........FREE DMAN AND GARTSIDE OUT........ clawhand
  • Score: 11

5:54pm Sat 30 Aug 14

waynagain says...

The fans are booing you Dougie, don't try to say it's the fans booing the players which is the reason for YOUR ineptitude. Huddersfield's manager was man enough to quit when he realized he wasn't up to the job. Leeds fired their manager when they realized he wasn't up to the job. What do those 2 teams have in common? - more points than Bolton. Time for Eddie to call for 2 taxis, one for Freedman and one for Gartside. If the two of them were at a club with any kind of ambition, they would have been fired long ago. Eddie, if you love the club as much as you claim, then do the RIGHT THING and get rid of the cancer which is destroying BWFC.
The fans are booing you Dougie, don't try to say it's the fans booing the players which is the reason for YOUR ineptitude. Huddersfield's manager was man enough to quit when he realized he wasn't up to the job. Leeds fired their manager when they realized he wasn't up to the job. What do those 2 teams have in common? - more points than Bolton. Time for Eddie to call for 2 taxis, one for Freedman and one for Gartside. If the two of them were at a club with any kind of ambition, they would have been fired long ago. Eddie, if you love the club as much as you claim, then do the RIGHT THING and get rid of the cancer which is destroying BWFC. waynagain
  • Score: 13

6:19pm Sat 30 Aug 14

BWFC1958 says...

I'm so glad you came when you did to pull us out of the s**t. When you arrived we were down near the bottom of the league and now after 2 years it's looking much better. Just let me check the league table to see the improvement in black and white. Oh hang on a minute............
I'm so glad you came when you did to pull us out of the s**t. When you arrived we were down near the bottom of the league and now after 2 years it's looking much better. Just let me check the league table to see the improvement in black and white. Oh hang on a minute............ BWFC1958
  • Score: 8

6:30pm Sat 30 Aug 14

keithyno.1 says...

nickyboy70 wrote:
all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.
I.
[quote][p][bold]nickyboy70[/bold] wrote: all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.[/p][/quote]I. keithyno.1
  • Score: 7

1:19am Sun 31 Aug 14

John Wanderer says...

We NEED a change of management.
He inherited an established premier league squad and couldn't do anything with them so they were taken off him. Now he has an average league 1 squad and they can't do anything either so in that respect it's a great fit.
We need an older more experienced manager who can put a team together from the donkeys we have and after he has proved he can do that hopefully PG will give him some money and let him build his squad.
I would take Megson back in a minute hell ,I'd take Sammy Lee.
At least those 2 have some pedigree and could restructure the club !!!
At this rate , this time next year we will be moaning because Dagenham have come to the macton and robbed us !!!
We NEED a change of management. He inherited an established premier league squad and couldn't do anything with them so they were taken off him. Now he has an average league 1 squad and they can't do anything either so in that respect it's a great fit. We need an older more experienced manager who can put a team together from the donkeys we have and after he has proved he can do that hopefully PG will give him some money and let him build his squad. I would take Megson back in a minute hell ,I'd take Sammy Lee. At least those 2 have some pedigree and could restructure the club !!! At this rate , this time next year we will be moaning because Dagenham have come to the macton and robbed us !!! John Wanderer
  • Score: 4

11:41am Sun 31 Aug 14

Pedro1877 says...

keithyno.1 wrote:
nickyboy70 wrote:
all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.
I.
Aye, have had enough. :-(
[quote][p][bold]keithyno.1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]nickyboy70[/bold] wrote: all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.[/p][/quote]I.[/p][/quote]Aye, have had enough. :-( Pedro1877
  • Score: 3

11:53am Sun 31 Aug 14

Cardiffwhite says...

Liamdog wrote:
DF. You make 3 points in your interview and all are clear as mud, 1, we spent 10-15 years in the premiership and are still paying huge wages. Who too??? And what sort of contract did they have !? 2,you have an eye for a player ! Really ! Even if you did, them playing in the premier league for someone else is no good to BWFC ! 3, I have been in football a long time, and you have achieved what as a manager ?
Wonder if any BN journalists read your excellent post. If so, there are some questions that they might like to use next week instead of just writing down whatever tosh DF comes up with.
[quote][p][bold]Liamdog[/bold] wrote: DF. You make 3 points in your interview and all are clear as mud, 1, we spent 10-15 years in the premiership and are still paying huge wages. Who too??? And what sort of contract did they have !? 2,you have an eye for a player ! Really ! Even if you did, them playing in the premier league for someone else is no good to BWFC ! 3, I have been in football a long time, and you have achieved what as a manager ?[/p][/quote]Wonder if any BN journalists read your excellent post. If so, there are some questions that they might like to use next week instead of just writing down whatever tosh DF comes up with. Cardiffwhite
  • Score: 3

11:53am Sun 31 Aug 14

stevethewanderer says...

keithyno.1 wrote:
nickyboy70 wrote:
all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.
I.
I.
[quote][p][bold]keithyno.1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]nickyboy70[/bold] wrote: all those who want df out and gartside out please say I.[/p][/quote]I.[/p][/quote]I. stevethewanderer
  • Score: 2

12:07pm Sun 31 Aug 14

simsamsuk says...

I
I simsamsuk
  • Score: 2

6:29pm Sun 31 Aug 14

Reality50 says...

Rumours circulating on Facebook today that Freedman has been sacked and an announcement to be made by the club tomorrow. Any confirmation?
Rumours circulating on Facebook today that Freedman has been sacked and an announcement to be made by the club tomorrow. Any confirmation? Reality50
  • Score: 4
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