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Parkinson accepts criticism is part of the job

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
His determination to succeed has not dimmed, nor has his belief in his squad of players.

And under-fire manager Phil Parkinson knows the criticism aimed at him – particularly after Wednesday night’s 3-0 defeat at home to Nottingham Forest – comes with the territory of managing Bolton Wanderers.

As he prepares for today’s match against struggling Hull City, Parkinson says he remains proud of what he has achieved at Wanderers so far.

“I’ve been a manager for a long time now,” he told The Bolton News. “And we have to accept criticism, it’s always been that way.

“It’s changed but I don’t go on social media or read the papers but we all get criticised, we know that. We have to take it on the chin, move on from the Forest game and look to improve in the next one.

“But I can tell you, when I go home and analyse the job we’ve done here I’m very proud of what everyone pulling together has achieved, from the chairman realigning the finances to the work from everyone on the coaching staff, the efforts of the players and the backing from supporters, it’s something we can all look back on with pride.

“We probably saved the club from drifting further down after relegation to League One.

“We should have been relegated by Christmas last season but myself and the staff are so proud of what we achieved, by firstly getting out of League One and then staying in this division.

“You won’t find a harder-working manager, or staff, than us and we’ll continue to be that way.”

While he admits the midweek defeat to Forest – the Whites’ fourth Championship game without a victory – was a bitter blow, Parkinson says he is relishing the chance to get back to action at the University of Bolton Stadium and make amends this afternoon.

But, despite Hull’s recent record – the Tigers have won only one of their last 11 league and cup games – the manager knows their visitors will be another tough nut to crack.

“The games come thick and fast and we have spoken in training about improving our performance level,” he added.

“We did okay in patches on Wednesday but that’s never going to be enough against a side like Forest, our standard has to be higher than that, whether it’s a starter or one of the subs.

“But, as much as we analyse things or we are critical of ourselves, we were up against a team where the gulf in finances is so vast it’s probably the equivalent of Burnley playing Manchester City.

“We’ve been up against it from the start, but the fact that we could have gone level on points with Forest if we had won on Wednesday is down to the good start we’ve made, we’re definitely punching well above our weight.

“If we can raise our performance levels to what we are capable of against Hull then the result will take care of itself. We all want the right result, obviously, but I’m concentrating on our performance in order to get that result.

“Hull have got a few injury problems so you can’t predict how they’ll line up. We know they won’t be a pushover, they’re a very decent side and it will be a tough game.

“But I’ll be on the touchline standing with my shoulders back and chest out because I’m proud of our achievements so far.

“We’ve fought against the odds from day one and we’ve been successful by sticking together and that’s what we have to continue to do, I’m really looking forward to the game.”


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