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Bolton Nuts » BWFC » Bolton Wanderers News » FA Cup win can be the catalyst for change in fortune – Donaldson

FA Cup win can be the catalyst for change in fortune – Donaldson

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Clayton Donaldson hopes his first goal in Wanderers colours can spark a change in fortunes across the board.

Before his second-half strike against Walsall in the FA Cup on Saturday it had been nearly a year since the experienced striker had celebrated a goal.

But, as Phil Parkinson’s side return to league action against Bristol City this weekend, Donaldson would dearly like to see results on the pitch continue to give supporters a happy distraction from events off it.

“Off-the-field issues have played a little part in our season but once you step over the line it’s a game of football and the boys want to do the best they can,” he said.

“That (Walsall) win has given us some confidence going into Bristol City away, and we need that. We haven’t started well in the league and our position shows that but any win gives you a boost.”

Given the regularity off-the-field issues have dominated the agenda at Wanderers in the past couple of years, Parkinson and his coaching staff have become old hands at keeping distractions on the training ground to a minimum.

Donaldson revealed the message which has been drilled into the squad is that they should concentrate solely on what they do on the pitch at Ashton Gate.

“You try and get your mind off things that are not under your control, really,” he said. “The manager deals with it in his own way, and he’s got a lot of things to deal with.

“He just says to players: ‘You focus on the football and we’ll focus on the rest,’ so that’s what we try to do.”

The Walsall win was a pleasant diversion from such matters – and the style of the second-half performance flew in the face of what had gone before.

The 6-0 hammering at Hull City on New Year’s Day was a low for Parkinson’s side, plunging them back into the bottom three.

Donaldson reckons the FA Cup allowed Wanderers to exorcise those demons – which should bode well for when they travel to Ashton Gate tomorrow.

“Getting beat 6-0 you can’t wait for the next game to put it right, no matter what league or cup it’s in,” he said.

“Going in at 1-0 down it was ‘oh no, here we go again’ but we managed to show belief and to score five goals is massive because we haven’t scored a lot this season.”

Donaldson’s second-half partnership with Josh Magennis – who grabbed a hat-trick – is also something Bolton fans are keen to see more of, especially at home.

The Northern Irishman had also gone without a goal since September but should now go into the Bristol game with a spring in his step.

“As a striker you are always judged on goals and people will look back at records, appearances and how many you have scored,” Donaldson said.

“To have not scored for Bolton before was a weight on my shoulders, so that has lifted a bit. A goal brings confidence.

“We’ll always work hard and having the two of us up there will always cause problems for the defenders.

“Both strikers scoring is massive going into the next game – confidence should be high.

“I think the team has lacked that over the last few months.”


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