Bolton Wanderers manager Dougie Freedman eyes up swoop for Birmingham City winger Chris Burke
WANDERERS are eyeing up a summer swoop for Birmingham City winger Chris Burke.
Dougie Freedman wants to add a goal-scoring wide man to his squad and has earmarked the 30-year-old as a potential bargain.
Burke’s contract at St Andrews is up this summer and while the cash-strapped Blues have offered him a deal to stay in the Midlands, he is thought to be considering his options.
Wanderers are unlikely to be alone in monitoring the former Rangers man, with Leeds United, Derby County and Nottingham Forest all linked strongly with him in the past.
Burke was part of the Birmingham side that survived by the skin of their teeth at the Reebok on the final day of the season but the financial problems at the club mean they are having to cut costs further.
Both Burke and big striker Nikola Zigic – one of the scorers in the 2-2 draw – have been offered 12-month contracts on a severely-reduced salary.
Though the Scot is happy in the Midlands, where he has spent the last three years since signing from Cardiff City, a move to Wanderers could be financially attractive.
Neil Danns’ six strikes aside, Wanderers suffered for goals from midfield last season, with Chung-Yong Lee, Jay Spearing, Darren Pratley and Medo Kamara netting two apiece, and Mark Davies, Rob Hall and Liam Trotter just once.
Burke has been a regular scorer in the Birmingham ranks over the last three years, scoring 25 league goals in his time with the Blues.
It is understood that Burke’s Champion-ship experience is another asset Freedman is keen to harness – lending him an edge over another reported target Liam Feeney.
Feeney was released by Millwall on Friday, and has been widely tipped to tie up a deal with Blackburn Rovers.
Liam Trotter was not named on the list, with his move to Wanderers still waiting to be confirmed by both clubs.