No return for former Bolton Wanderers loan star Craig Dawson

The Bolton News: Craig Dawson is back in the fold at West Brom Craig Dawson is back in the fold at West Brom

WANDERERS will not be chasing last season’s saviour Craig Dawson in the current transfer window.

Dougie Freedman says no contact had been made with West Brom about the former England Under-21 international since August, at which time he was vying for a spot in the Baggies’ first team.

Since Steve Clarke’s sacking at the Premier League club there have been rumours Dawson could emerge as a target again – but even though Freedman is looking to bolster his defence, the centre-half is not one of the names currently heading his list.

“I’ve made no contact with them (West Brom) since the beginning of the season, or just after,” he said.

“They said to me he (Dawson) is not coming out on loan and he’s going to be in the squad every week, and he has been.

“I have spoken to his agent and he tells me Craig is very, very determined to make it in the West Brom side, so therefore I’ve not wasted a lot of energy running after that one. It feels like it’s far away.

“He’s a loan player who came in and credit to the scouting department because he was fantastic for us, just the same as Neil Danns or Kevin McNaughton.

“If it does change then, well, who wouldn’t be interested?”

Dawson proved a major force behind Wanderers’ resurgence in the second half of last season but Freedman admits to some frustration he was unable to make the deal a permanent one. Likewise, McNaughton’s recent return to the Cardiff City first team scuppered his hopes of the Scottish defender making a quick return to the Reebok – although the Whites boss remains optimistic that is a deal that can eventually be done.

The perfect loan, claims Freedman, is more like Neil Danns’ recent try-before-you-buy experience.

“On my behalf it can get frustrating getting loan players in and making them better players,” he said.

“That side of the loan market for me takes a lot of work. I like to get the right ones at the right price – not just to get their careers going.”

Freedman’s predecessor Owen Coyle took pride in Wanderers becoming a “finishing school” for some of the Premier League’s brightest young talents, such as Daniel Sturridge and Jack Wilshere.

But the current Reebok boss would rather have a chance of working permanently with any player he brings in on loan.

“You do have to use your loans well in this division but it can become very frustrating when you shine them up and off they go,” he said.

“Of course, it can be that a player isn’t for sale, or is worth too much money, or coming back from injury. Sometimes you can take advantage of that situation and I think we’ve done okay in that respect.

“The fans, like me, would like to keep one or two of them but it’s not always the case.

“I have got a track record with these kind of deals and ideally I try to get them on a permanent deal before I loan them.

“I want to work with my own players.”

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