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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 September 2006, 07:49 GMT 08:49 UK
Kevin Nolan column
Bolton travel to some away games on the train

By Kevin Nolan
Bolton captain

It has been a busy few days for everyone at the club but I am unable to talk about any allegations while the club carries out an investigation.

El-Hadji Diouf
El-Hadji Diouf does not just have the loudest clothes. You hear him before you see him.

I managed to get on the scoresheet on Tuesday, scoring in our 3-1 Carling Cup win at Walsall - it has been a long time coming. The last time I found the net was against Sunderland in March.

We travelled to the game on the club coach but when we play in London, as we have twice already this season, we go down on the train.

The lads all meet up at the training ground and travel to Preston train station on the coach before heading down to the capital.

We have two carriages to ourselves and the whole journey is a lot smoother and more relaxing than coach travel. When we arrive in London the coach picks us up and drives us to our hotel.

All of the lads have a laptop and many of them watch films on the journey down.

Al Pacino is my favourite actor and I always take my copy of The Godfather trilogy with me - I never get bored of those films.

If we are staying at a hotel and I'm struggling to sleep I often put one on safe in the knowledge that if I drop off it doesn't really matter because I already know the ending!

We are sometimes away for several days, particularly last season when we played in Europe, and the laptops are great for keeping boredom at bay.

A lot of the foreign players use them for sending e-mails and catching up with news from home on the internet.

We sometimes play poker on the train, players putting a small amount like 10 in to buy a stack of chips. When you've lost them you're out.

A couple of weeks ago I cleaned up so the next time I play they will all be after me.

The banter on the trips is usually shared around, though Nicky Hunt tends to take quite a lot of stick on a variety of issues.

El-Hadji Diouf tends to take quite a lot about his clothes. Rightly so - they are hardly a sight for sore eyes.

Dioufy does not just have the loudest clothes. You hear him before you see him. He is often not actually saying anything, just making strange noises.

He is bonkers but a great lad to have around. He keeps a smile on everyone's face.

Gary Speed is very intelligent and will often spend his time on the train reading The Guardian or The Times.

Whenever we have a quiz you want to be on his team. He really is the man who knows - it is frightening.

I would say that I'm a Daily Star or Daily Mirror reader in the main.

I went through a phase of losing mobile phones on away trips

Mind you, I can more or less guarantee that on the way home from an away trip Gary thinks that he has lost his keys. Of course, they are always in his pocket.

I'm the bloke who'll forget his passport, though a few years ago I went through a phase of losing mobile phones.

I lost four phones in as many months. I left one on a plane and was unable to go back and retrieve it. Another I dropped down a toilet and could not get it to work again.

I gave up on mobile phones for a few months.

We are generally allowed to keep our phones on when travelling on the train but they must be switched off for meetings and training sessions.

We were watching a video of Middlesbrough the other week when Ricardo Gardner's phone went off.

Ricardo comes from Jamaica and the type of music that his ring tone played left no one in any doubt as to whose phone it was. He could not even point at anyone else and try to bluff it out.

When a phone goes off in a meeting all the lads chuckle and the gaffer shouts 'fine'.

Everyone then checks their mobile phone - just to make sure.


Hi Nobby, Remember me? The man on the dressing room door, now retired but still taking an interest in you. It seems that you are going through a spell of not playing too well, not to worry you will come good soon and will eventually get your rightful place in the England squad.

Good luck in the games to follow, I will be watching with interest!!!
Ron Mortimer, England

I remember you Ron!

Thanks very much for e-mailing. I do miss you every Saturday, in fact I think the reason why I have not scored at The Reebok for ages is that I have not been able to shake your hand.

What, if any, pre-game routines and superstitions do you participate in?
Kevin, USA

I know a lot of our lads are superstitious - always eating at certain times, putting one boot or shin pad on before the other - but I try not to be.

In fact, week in, week out, I always try to change things because I know that if I'm on a good run and doing the same things I'll start to think that I must do them to play well.

Kevin, if you could go back in time and pick any player to play alongside you in midfield, who would it be?
Henrik Anderson, Sweden

Most of them would be either Liverpool or Manchester United players. I would have loved to play with Eric Cantona. From the current crop either Steve Gerrard, Frank Lampard or Ronaldinho.

Hi Kevin, I would like to ask you whether in your home life, you do much of the cooking and what kind of say you have over your diet in general? Keep up the good work
Andy Haslam, England

At the moment I am living with my Mum and Dad. My Mum does most of the cooking and I do have quite a lot to say regarding what I eat. When I will be living with my missus I'll probably expect her to do most of the cooking. That is not in any way a sexist comment - it is a quality issue because she is much better than me.

Hello Kevin,

You might remember that me and my missus shared a cab with you recently after the Flintoff dinner. Just a quick note to thank you and apologise if I was a drunken embarrassment!! You paid as well so I owe you a couple of beers!

Thanks again and hope all goes well with the baby and for the rest of the season.
Jim Carter, England

Jim, much appreciated.

I might take a beer off you at some point in the season if I am allowed.

  • Kevin will continue to answer a selection of your questions each week throughout the season. Send us your questions using the post form in the top right-hand corner.

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