Coyle defends Bolton reputation and reveals Arsenal admiration

Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle has defended his sides’ reputation after being accused of unattractive football in recent years.

Some fans and people around the game of football have associated Bolton with a too direct style of play, and a physicality that has led to some of the clubs at the top of the table coming unstuck. Manchester United manager Sir alex Ferguson also recently claimed that he “expected that”, when referring to the tackle by Kevin Davies that left Tom Cleverley with an ankle injury.

Coyle, however, believes the reputation should not stick: “I think there’s always perceptions of football and Bolton have been tagged rightly or wrongly as a one-dimensional team that just play the ball from back to front, and I honestly think they did the club a disservice with that. All we’ve tried to do is to try and make sure we have more facets to our play, more flavours if you want; that we’re not predictable.

“That’s all we’re trying to do, we’re just trying to get better year by year and hopefully as time goes, and you’ll see a more fluid, better passing game.”

When asked about his ideal style of play, Coyle revealed two of the clubs that he admires the most, but admits that their style may not be suitable for his current set of players: “Ideally we would all like to play like Barcelona, but for me the league we’re in; the Barclays Premier League, is the best league in the world. I think ultimately the way Arsenal, pass and move is a skill that certainly pleases me, and one I would like to evolve to. I think we’re a million miles from that at the moment, but in answer to your question, that’s the way I like to see football played.”

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