Kop star Spearing aims to leave Reebok on a high
IF Jay Spearing is to ride off into the sunset this summer then he wants to leave Wanderers with something to remember him by.
It seems that regardless of what transpires in the next nine games the on-loan Liverpool midfielder will be heading back to the Premier League at the end of the season.
Dougie Freedman has distanced himself from a permanent deal, while Spearing has himself hinted there is some unfinished business at Anfield, where Brendan Rogers continues to keep a close eye on his progress.
No matter what the outcome, the 24-year-old battler has done his reputation no harm whatsoever during his time at the Reebok, providing a heartbeat to a team whose promotion prospects hardly had a pulse up until the last few weeks.
But Spearing is determined to make sure this chapter of his career has a happy ending and has made a good start in helping the Whites to an eight-game unbeaten streak heading into this weekend’s clash with Ipswich Town.
And though he stresses he is not looking any further than three points at Portman Road, he does admit the lure of the play-offs is currently spurring the side on.
“I don’t think anyone is getting too over-excited,” he said. “But we know we’re on a decent run and the confidence is growing. But we all know you can lose a game in 90 minutes and things can change.
“We are more of a unit at the moment. The gaffer came in and put his ideas down and it was just a matter of time before we got them down to a tee.
“Losing only one or two games this year is a massive difference from that first six months of the season.
“We were all disappointed to drop silly points at the start of the season. But I think we have started to finish teams off now and defended better as a unit – so every single one of us wants to get into the play-offs, go to Wembley and get back into the Premier League.
“We know there’s a lot more work to come, though, and we’ve got to keep this going into Saturday’s game so things can look good going into the international break.”
With a year left on his Anfield contract, Spearing should get a chance to return to Liverpool and stake a claim to stay at the club he has represented since the age of eight.
When the former England Under-21 man was first mooted as a Wanderers signing, the Reds reportedly valued him at £3million. But Spearing reads nothing into the fact he had to leave the top flight to get regular first-team football and believes the experience he has gained at the Reebok will stand him in good stead when he returns to Merseyside. “There’s no hard feelings about it whatsoever,” he said. “It’s just a matter of me playing football and I’ve enjoyed every single minute of being at Bolton.
“I had a good chat with the manager at Liverpool and we both ended on great terms.
“We are still in touch now and he’s contacted me a couple of times to see how I’m getting on.
“I’ve got to thank Owen Coyle for bringing me in at Bolton because I knew he’d been after me for a while.
“I’d seen what he did for Daniel Sturridge and Jack Wilshere and so that was a big incentive to come here.
“But since Dougie has been in he’s nailed me down to a role, doing the defensive work and getting on the ball.
“He’s changed my game and I’ve got a lot to thank him for because he’s allowed me to express myself more out on the field.
“Growing up and coming through the Liverpool Academy you are going to have that burden on you, just like everyone else.
“It just got to that time where I needed to go out and, hopefully, I’ve kept everyone happy here and we can end this season on a high.”