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Preview: Bolton Wanderers vs. Ipswich Town

Sports Mole looks ahead to Saturday's Championship clash between Bolton and high-flying Ipswich, with both sides looking to keep up recent unbeaten streaks.

Ipswich Town could move top of the Championship table with a victory over Bolton Wanderers at the Macron Stadium this weekend.

The Tractor Boys are the league's form team with 16 points from their last six outings, and should Derby fail to beat Middlesbrough in the day's early kickoff then a win would be enough to see them rise to the top.

They will certainly be confident of holding up their end of the bargain, having won five of their last six matches and only lost one of their last 16.

There are no signs of them letting up either, with manager Mick McCarthy describing their 4-1 victory over Leeds United last weekend as their best performance of the season.

Daryl Murphy was once again on the scoresheet in that match, and his brace means that he now stands alone as the Championship's top scorer with 13 goals, the same tally he managed for the whole of the previous campaign.

If there is a slight concern for McCarthy right now, it will be about his side's away form. They boast the best home record in the division, but they have only picked up three victories on the road so far.

Despite his delight at the performance against Leeds, McCarthy will be forced into at least one change as Stephen Hunt has a virus. Luke Hyam is also still absent, while there are doubts over Cameron Stewart, Kevin Bru and Teddy Bishop.

Bolton are on an impressive unbeaten run of their own coming into this match, last tasting defeat in October. Their five-game streak without a loss since then has seen them climb four points clear of the bottom three.

The Trotters were held to a goalless draw by Reading at the Madejski Stadium last time out, but it is their home form that is the most encouraging aspect of the Neil Lennon era so far.

The former Celtic boss has won every single match at the Macron since taking charge, and another three points this weekend would see them win five in a row at home for the first time since April of last year.

Former Chelsea and Barcelona striker Eidur Gudjohnsen has returned to the club where his career in English football began 16 years ago, and he could be included in the squad this weekend.

Indeed, a hamstring injury for Craig Davies could mean that the veteran Icelandic striker starts the match 14 years after his last appearance for the club, which also came at home to Ipswich.

Kevin McNaughton is not far away from a return but will not be available this weekend, while Mark Davies and Marc Tierney are long-term absentees.


Recent form: LWWDWD

Possible starting lineup: Lonergan; Vela, Dervite, Mills, Ream; Lee, Danns, Pratley, Clayton, Feeney; Gudjohnsen


Recent form: WWWDWW

Possible starting lineup: Bialkowski; Mings, Berra, Chambers, Smith; Tabb, Skuse, Anderson; McGoldrick, Murphy, Sammon

Sports Mole says: 1-1

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Nigel Adkins manager of Reading prior to the Sky Bet Championship match between Reading and Fulham at Madejski Stadium on September 13, 2014
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