‘Let’s get the Mason out’: Dougie Freedman turns to on-loan striker for goal-shy Bolton Wanderers

By Tom Belger

Dougie Freedman has confirmed he will give a full debut to on-loan striker Joe Mason this Saturday when Bolton play Doncaster Rovers at the Reebok Stadium.

Bolton have only won once at home this season and are aiming to prevent three straight defeats after 1-0 losses to Middlesbrough and Huddersfield this week.

Misfiring strikers have been blamed for the Trotters only scoring 17 league goals this season and Freedman hopes Mason will get them back on track.

“Over the last few games I feel we’ve maybe lacked a bit of energy, with that in mind we’re going to be giving young Joe Mason a run out,” Freedman told his weekly press conference.

“He has trained very well and hopefully he’ll freshen things up for us.

“Joe probably feels he has got a point to prove, and that’s certainly something we can benefit from.”

Mason has twice appeared as a substitute since arriving from Cardiff at the end of November and is a player Freedman has long admired.

“He is a player I have tried to sign on a number of occasions and he has been good to work with so far therefore he deserves this opportunity and I’m sure he’ll take it.”

Freedman is hoping to recapture Bolton’s impressive November form, where he was nominated for the Championship manager of the month award after guiding the Trotters to three straight victories.

“Over the last five or six games we have been good and we are now looking forward to getting back on track.”

However the Scot knows victory over Doncaster will be a tough prospect, especially as the Yorkshire club are in confident mood after impressive results over QPR and Birmingham this week.

“I played with Paul Dickov and his side will be a test. If we approach it in the right way we have the qualities to win.”

The fixture will be their first league meeting since 1987 when Doncaster ran out 1-0 winners at Burnden Park in a division three clash.

Bolton will also have to keep an eye on some of Doncaster’s good young loan players, such as Ross Turnbull and Federico Macheda, who both have Premier League experience and impressed while at the Keepmoat.

Chris Eagles is Bolton’s only fresh injury concern after a busy week but Freedman is confident the former Manchester United man will be available for Saturday.

“We’re okay injury-wise. Chris Eagles had a small strain but he should be back in contention for the weekend.”

Image courtesy of BWFC via YouTube, with thanks.

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