Rocky Davo has plenty of fight left in him yet

WRITTEN off more times than Rocky Balboa, and with the scars to prove it, Kevin Davies has at least one more big fight to win in his Bolton Wanderers career.

There was little reason for the talismanic striker to celebrate his latest milestone, which passed by in a brief cameo off the bench in defeat against Watford on Saturday.

A disappointing way though it was to mark entry into an exclusive club of just 21 players to have played for the club 400 times, the achievement should by no means be disregarded.

Davies will forever rub shoulders with long-time team-mates Jussi Jaaskelainen and Ricardo Gardner and other all-time greats like Nat Lofthouse, Eddie Hopkinson and Roy Greaves as one of Wanderers' most enduring stalwarts.

But rather like the club itself, the immediate future is altogether more difficult to predict.

Davies remains the last survivor of the glory Premier League days under Sam Allardyce and a hugely-respected figure on and off the pitch.

Life outside the top flight continues to bite hard on the club, however, and with the exile most likely to last at least another season, where does that leave the powerful front man as his contract draws closer to an end in the summer?

Twelve months ago Davies was in a similar situation to the one he faces now.

Contract winding down and out of Owen Coyle's first-team reckoning, he was subject to a rejected bid from Sunderland in the January transfer window of 2012, only to win back his place in the team and earn another one-year deal.

A year on, and though whispers of interest from Celtic on deadline day proved nothing to be concerned about, Davies again finds himself scrapping for a first-team berth with younger pretenders in the likes of Marvin Sordell and David Ngog.

Though Wanderers have not been a model of consistency at any stage this season, they are still statistically more likely to win with Davies playing from the start.

Out of eight games in which the Yorkshireman has not figured, the Whites have picked up just one win, against Sunderland in the FA Cup. Of the 25 matches he has started, they have earned eight wins in all competitions.

Dougie Freedman has already stated publicly that contract issues are not his immediate priority with league performance still way below that which was expected at the start of the season.

The Scot has instigated a new style and system of play, and though that has not been completely at his expense – Davies has started 12 of Freedman’s 19 games in charge so far – there are signs that the manager is looking towards the future. Davies is 36 next month and it remains to be seen whether his fine service to the football club, past and present, will ultimately be enough for the two parties to reach an agreement of some fashion in the coming months.

While much would appear up in the air at the moment, one thing that won’t be questioned in any part of the Yorkshireman’s adopted home town is the player’s loyalty to the cause.

After adding his name to a list of true greats, Super Kev does not look out of place.

Matches with Kevin Davies starting this season P25 W8 D8 L9 Matches without Kevin Davies starting this season P8 W1 D3 L4 Wanderers 400 Club Kevin Davies is the 21st player to make 400 appearances for Wanderers.

Here is a list of the 20 men above him in the list of all-time appearances: Eddie Hopkinson 578 Roy Greaves 575 Alec Finney 530 Jussi Jaaskelainen 527 Warwick Rimmer 528 Bryan Edwards 518 Ted Vizard 512 Paul Jones 506 Nat Lofthouse 503 Roy Hartle 499 Joe Smith 492 Doug Holden 463 Billy Butler 449 Stan Hanson 423 Steve Thompson 422 David Stokes 420 Freddie Hill 412 Jimmy Phillips 411 Ricardo Gardner 410 Syd Farrimond 404

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