Star Whites duo must wait for new deal prospects
WANDERERS have no immediate plans to offer a new contract to skipper Kevin Davies or midfield talisman Stuart Holden.
Both players are in the final six months of their existing deals, but Whites boss Dougie Freedman has confirmed that the club is not currently looking to negotiate a new contract with either man whilst they lie 16th in the Championship table.
It emerged on Thursday that Marcos Alonso has turned down an offer from Wanderers and is now in talks with Italian side Fiorentina, and news that Davies and Holden could potentially also be lost on a free this summer is unlikely to go down well with supporters.
Loyal servant Davies has been at the Reebok for close to a decade and despite closing in on his 36th birthday, he has not started in just six games in league and cup this season.
Fans’ favourite Holden has endured a desperate run of injuries that restricted him to just one full appearance in nearly two years, but his recent comeback against Sunderland in the FA Cup has raised hopes that his career is now finally getting back on track.
Freedman outlined the club’s policy, and said the current uncertainty in the league table is the reason behind the shutdown on talks.
“With the situation that the club finds itself in, I don't think it's appropriate to be handing out contracts to be very honest,” Freedman said.
“We are in a very difficult position in the league, and a difficult position handling what has happened in the past year.
“I've got to make sure I look after the club and that finances are in order.
“Things have got to get done in the right order, in terms of moving forward as a club.
“When contracts come up, yes I'll talk about it. We have offered Marcos a deal and he's turned it down – good luck to him. That's the way it goes.”
Holden’s battle for fitness also goes some way to explaining the club’s reluctance to offer him a new contract for now.
The popular American has played just 20 minutes of first team football since recovering from knee cartilage damage caused by screws inserted into a previous injury sustained at Old Trafford in March 2011.
At the time, the US international had been one of the brightest midfield talents in the Premier League and fans have voiced fears that he could be tempted away from Wanderers if his future remains in doubt.
Freedman hinted that a deal could be struck once his rehabilitation is further down the line.
“Stu's a fantastic lad but he'll be the first one to admit his full focus is on getting into the team,” he said.
“I think it's only fair that I give that to him and then we can all sit down.”
Though finances are tight, Freedman hopes to be able to bring in a couple more new faces before Thursday’s deadline.
“I'm looking at two more targets that I feel would improve the team,” he said.
“It's going to be very difficult to get them but I'll be trying my very best.
“There's no use me bringing in bodies and numbers. We've got enough numbers.
“I need to bring in those with a different mentality than what I have already got.”
And while the manager confirmed that winger Gregg Wylde could be sent out on loan early next week, he does not have plans to send many more of his youngsters out despite enquiries from elsewhere.
“One or two clubs have asked for the younger guys – Tom Eaves, Joe Riley – but I like to have them around. They bring a certain freshness to the group,” he added.