DOUGIE Freedman will have to wait before boosting his defensive ranks – but landed Millwall midfielder Liam Trotter in a cut price deal in what proved a surprising transfer deadline day at Wanderers.
Craig Davies completed his loan move to Preston as expected – but while the manager had said that those funds would be diverted to his search for a full-back, it was 24-year-old ball-winner Trotter who was the only new signing for fans to get their teeth into yesterday.
Freedman’s exhaustive hunt for a defender will continue, with the loan window reopening in a fortnight, but for the time being it seems Tim Ream will continue in his role as a makeshift left-back.
News of Wanderers’ interest in Trotter, who had turned down a new contract with the Lions, had prompted an angry reaction from Millwall boss Ian Holloway, who accused the club of trying to unsettle his man.
But by lunchtime a deal had been agreed to bring him to the Reebok on loan until the summer when a small fee will be paid.
He will not be eligible to face the South Londoners at The Den when the two clubs meet on February 15.
A deal had also been done to bring Joe Mason back on loan from Cardiff only for the 22-year-old to pull out at the last moment for “personal reasons.”
Davies will stay with Preston until the end of the season – leaving Lukas Jutkiewicz as the only fit senior striker in contention for today’s game at Ipswich Town.
And the 28-year-old was looking forward to gaining the regular football he failed to find in the last 12 months at Wanderers, in what has been an injury-hit year.
“It has been a while since I played a few games in a row, so hopefully I can do that here,” he said.
“I have been a bit unfortunate the first part of the season through injury, but hopefully the second half of the season I can do really well and play a lot of games for Preston and help push for promotion.
“I just want to start playing football again and like I said in an interview last week, I just want to stay fit and work hard and do well to be honest.
“It is a bit frustrating not playing games, last week when I played against Cardiff in the cup and QPR, it brings it all back that playing is what you really want to do and be out there on the Saturday or Tuesday.
“You want to be preparing properly and you want to be a part of something and that is what I want to be.”
Meanwhile, the signing of 20-year-old winger Yannick Bastos from Luxembourg club Differdange 03 was also confirmed by Wanderers yesterday.
The midfielder will move into the development squad for the time being and has signed an 18-month contract.