GARY Megson has denied a Sunday newspaper report of a bust-up with Jlloyd Samuel and claimed people are trying to cause problems at the club.
The newspaper article claimed the defender, who was left out for Saturday’s draw against Manchester City, told Megson that “It’s no wonder none of the players want to play for you.”
But the Bolton boss has rubbished the claims — and insists he knows who is responsible for the trouble-making.
“The article was scurrilous,” said Megson, who refused to say who was behind the leak. “It was misleading at best and done for a purpose for which I’m aware.
“I’d had a word with Jlloyd Samuel about something I wasn’t happy with and that was it.
“All the other stuff was put in there to cause problems.
“I’ve been in football a long time and you know when you’re down in this position there will be people who look upon as an advantage to them as an individual.
“It was a complete load of rubbish.
“I know who wrote it and I know who gave him the story and what was behind it.
“It’s no big deal. I’ve no problem with Jlloyd or any of them and they’ve no problem with me.”
Megson has spoken before about certain individuals within the squad trying to destabilise the club, nor is it the first time reports of dressing room unrest have surfaced this season.
But there was no doubting the team’s spirit following the Manchester City performance and, tellingly, Gary Cahill’s celebration, where he ran towards the bench to high-five Megson after scoring Whites’ second goal, showed the manager still has the support of the players.
And, ahead of tonight’s crucial showdown with fellow strugglers West Ham United, the Reebok boss has no plans to change his management style He added: “I said what I wanted to say to Jlloyd and I said it to another player against City and, if I see something that needs to be said (against West Ham), I’ll say it again.”
Indeed, Megson’s more pressing concern is finding a balance between Wanderers’ new expansive approach and their porous defence.
Bolton have failed to keep a clean sheet all season and there last shut-out was against Sunderland on May 9, 2009 - 21 games ago.
The flip side, though, is the team are now far more entertaining to watch, with goals flowing freely at the Reebok this term.
But it is at the back where Megson feels his side to tighten up if they are to move out of the relegation zone.
“It’s something we’re trying to get better at because, while City was a great game for everybody to watch, it’s galling we take the lead three times and don’t come away with three points,” he said.
“We’ve got to be better defensively but the whole team is geared to going the other way.
“Ivan Klasnic scored two terrific goals, but he doesn’t do a lot when we haven’t got the ball. Chung-Yong Lee is an offensive-thinking player, as is Matt Taylor, Tamir Cohen, Gretar Steinsson and Paul Robinson.
“The team is geared to going forward and being more pleasing on the eye, but we’ve got to get the results while we’re doing it.
“When I arrived at the club Sammy (Lee) was trying to do it but he changed everything very quickly and it didn’t work out. We’re trying to do exactly the same things as Sammy but in a slower way.
“We played some brilliant stuff against City and we’ve got to keep doing what we’ve been doing, especially on Saturday, and hope these things start going our way.”