Phil Parkinson: Bolton Wanderers appoint Bradford City boss as new manager

Phil Parkinson
Phil Parkinson led Bradford to the League One play-off semi-finals last month

Bolton Wanderers have appointed Phil Parkinson as their new manager on a two-year contract.

The 48-year-old has joined the Trotters from fellow League One side Bradford City after the two clubs agreed a compensation deal.

Parkinson will be joined at Bolton, who finished bottom of the Championship last season, by assistant Steve Parkin.

Nigel Adkins and Steve Cotterill had also been in the running to take charge at the Macron Stadium.

Bolton had been without a permanent manager since Neil Lennon left by mutual consent in March, with academy boss Jimmy Phillips taking charge for the end-of-season run-in.

Cup success

Former Hull, Colchester and Charlton boss Parkinson is best known for leading Bradford to a series of cup upsets.

In the 2012-13 season, he led the Bantams to the final of the League Cup, having beaten Premier League giants Arsenal on penalties in the quarter-finals before knocking out Aston Villa over two legs in the last four.

But City could not cause the ultimate upset, as the then-League Two side were humbled 5-0 by Swansea City in the final.

In January 2015, Bradford again made headlines under Parkinson as they came back from 2-0 down to beat Chelsea 4-2 in the FA Cup fourth round - the only time any side came back from a two-goal deficit to win at Stamford Bridge while Jose Mourinho was in charge.

City went on to beat Sunderland in the next round before losing 3-0 to Championship side Reading in a quarter-final replay.

Bolton 'too good to turn down'

The Bantams were recently bought by a German consortium, but Parkinson said the club's change of ownership was not a factor in his decision to take the Bolton job.

"It was a very tough call to leave, and I just felt that I wanted a fresh challenge," he told BBC Radio Manchester.

"I'd like to thank the new owners, who've been very reasonable and fair about this and they haven't for one minute pushed me out of the door. I wish them all the best for the future and I think they'll be very successful.

"I just fancied a new challenge and got this great opportunity, and it was too good to turn down."

Bradford have also released a statement on the club's websiteexternal-link, describing Parkinson's departure as being on "mutually good terms".


Bolton's relegation from the Championship means they will be playing in the third tier of English football for the first time since 1992-93.

The Sports Shield consortium, led by former Wanderers striker Dean Holdsworth, took over the Lancashire club in March, along with chairman Ken Anderson's Inner Circle group.

It is believed former owner Eddie Davies has written off the majority of the £172.9m debt that was owed to him, but recruitment could still be hampered with Bolton still under a transfer embargo for breaking Financial Fair Play regulations.

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