Trio of Bolton heroes handed managerial task for Bristol clash as Trotters continue hunt for new boss

By Sam Ruffe

A trio of former Bolton Wanderers players have been handed the task of steadying The Trotters after former boss Owen Coyle was sacked this week.

Wanderers stalwart Jimmy Philips will take charge of the first XI for the second time in his career, having previously helped in the transition between Gary Megson and Coyle.

Now in his 24th season with the club, Philips will stand alongside former manager Sammy Lee and old-boy Julian Darby.

And with the identity of Coyle’s replacement still unknown, Philips is aware that he could be organising the team for their next home game against Bristol City.

He said: “We’ve got training planned for this week and next, and we’ll be building our work up looking towards the Bristol City game, whatever the time frame may be.

“We’re going to be pulling out all the stops to get the best out of the players.”

Farnworth-born Darby – who made 270 appearances for The Trotters – was brought in to help out with the academy, but has now made the transition to the first team on Philips’ request.

And with Darby notching up six years of side-line experience at Preston North End, Derby and Nottingham Forest, Philips knows what the industrious midfielder will bring to the side.

“We’ve brought in Julian because he’s an excellent coach – he’s shown that in the work he’s been doing with the academy,” Philips added.

“He’s been in and around the Championship for a good number of years now, working with Preston, Derby and Nottingham Forest and has enjoying various successes.

“Julian and Sammy have both also played for Bolton, so we’ve of course got the best interests of the club at heart.”

Current favourites to take permanent charge of Bolton include former Manchester United great Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Portsmouth boss Michael Appleton.


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