IT’S no wonder Kevin Davies is licking his lips in anticipation of playing at a packed Elland Road this afternoon.
Since signing for Wanderers in 2003, the skipper has clashed with Leeds United only three times, but those occasions have inevitably meant bad news for the West Yorkshiremen.
He scored alongside Stelios in a 2-0 victory not long after joining the club, also turning out at the Reebok later that season to effectively relegate Eddie Gray’s side from the Premier League with a 4-1 win inspired by Jay Jay Okocha and Youri Djorkaeff.
Most recently, Davies bagged a brace of goals as the two sides met outside the top flight for the first time in nearly 20 years, a game that ended 2-2.
On the back of Saturday’s result against Birmingham City, Davies is willing Wanderers to gain some momentum after such an inconsistent year, in which they strung back-to-back league victories together only once.
But heading into a potentially hostile atmosphere at Elland Road, he believes there is no time like the present to start making a late dash up the table.
“It’s the kind of game we should be looking forward to,” he told The Bolton News. “We’ve been here numerous times, talked about putting results together, but I have sensed a bit of form is coming.
“We’ve had some pretty good performances since the manager took over, and a couple that weren’t up to scratch. “But this kind of game with a big crowd against a big club who have dropped away from the Premiership, is what you want to be doing. They are a fantastic club and I can’t wait to play there again.”
It seems every time Wanderers get a win the topic of a promotion push comes up, such is the expectation placed upon the under-achieving squad.
Davies believes anything is still possible in the next five months but accepts the window of opportunity is closing with each backward step taken.
“We would have to go on one hell of a run (to make the top two),” he said. “And I have had this conversation too many times this season when we have had a good result and not followed it up.
“It’s a quick turnaround so it’s important we prepare right and go there and put in another decent performance. The standard we set should be our minimum. It would be great to go on a really good run and get amongst it all.
“We have got to learn quickly how to win in this league.”
Aside from matters in the league, Davies is also one of several players coming to the end of their contract at the end of the season.
Stuart Holden, Martin Petrov and Marcos Alonso are among others in the same boat and, with Dougie Freedman also likely to add to the squad in January, this transfer window could see a few comings and goings at the Reebok.
“These things always take care of themselves,” Davies said. “January can be uncertain for players who are out of contract or like us with a new manager in charge. He may want to get a few in and a few out. “But that’s part and parcel of the game. I am sure there will be discussions among players. I don’t worry about those things. I just concentrate on trying to play and play well.”