Sammy Lee looked out of his depth. He was tactically dismantled by Sam Allardyce. Bolton was physically dismantled by Newcastle. Newcastle looks a totally different side than in the last, oh, decade and the North of England may just get to watch some great football again.
Starting for Newcastle was Mark Viduka and Obafemi Martins up front, both preferred to Michael Owen who certainly faces a fight for a place in the starting lineup. New boy Alan Smith was in midfield and the new look defense was on display.
Bolton manager Sammy Lee started with 8 players who were on last year’s books.
It was one way traffic from the start and 2-0 within the first quarter of an hour. Obafemi Martins showed extraordinary agility to score the second with a fantastic overhead kick slammed into the goal -certainly a goal of the month contender.
Soon after, Newcastle made it 3-0 as it started to look like a home game.
At the half Ricardo Vaz Te was substituted in favor of El Hadji Diouf but that was an excuse. Bolton’s back 4 were a shambles, all over the place. Kevin Davis, Mr I always start but can’t score, was useless, but the 20 year old had to take the blame. Bolton were brighter after the half and it could only have been Anelka to get a goal back.
Newcastle gave the best performance from Saturday, Liverpool a close second. Bolton were tied with listless West Ham for the worst. Bolton should bounce back, its a team loaded with experienced professionals and Vaz Te should retain his starting position and be given the chance he deserves.
Big Sam got his dream start. The funny thing is that Newcastle looked like last year’s Bolton, and Bolton like Newcastle. If there were ever an example of how the basics matter at the top level, here it is.