No Bolton Wanderers loans ahead of Leeds United visit
DOUGIE Freedman will have to look for answers from within his existing squad for this weekend’s clash with Leeds United.
Although the emergency loan window opened yesterday for Championship clubs, Wanderers are not expected to bring in any new recruits by the time Brian McDermott’s side visit the Reebok.
It has been a long international break for the Whites boss, who tried unsuccessfully to add two season-long loan signings before the close of the transfer window. Deals for Stoke winger Michael Kightly and Crystal Palace defender Peter Ramage fell by the wayside last week and though reports continue to link the club with a move for Northern Ireland international Chris Baird – recently released by Fulham – Freedman is not expected to bring in short-term fixes unless there is any unexpected interest in his players from elsewhere.
That means any changes to the team that underperformed at Ewood Park will come from within the camp, where Freedman has been boosted by the news that Tim Ream and Marc Tierney have now shaken off minor calf and groin strains, respectively, to stake their claims for a start.
The majority of the squad trained regularly at Euxton through the international break, which now leaves the manager with a few more choices should he decide to make changes against Leeds.
In attack, Chris Eagles is also pushing hard for only his second start of the season and Andre Moritz has undergone extra strength training sessions in an effort to get fully fit after a calf problem.
Wanderers currently prop up the Championship table without a league win in their first five games and Freedman’s words after the Blackburn defeat hinted at a change of tack.
That was not backed up in the transfer market but while the famously-meticulous Scot is not known for making off-the-cuff decisions, it would be a surprise to see the Ewood display pass off without seeing changes in his starting line-up.
Wanderers have not named the same 11 in any of their five games so far but have not been helped by niggling injuries and illness to key men such as Eagles, Tierney and David Ngog.