Per Frandsen back in business and willing on his beloved Bolton Wanderers
PER Frandsen believes the omens are good for Wanderers as they begin another attempt to escape the Championship’s clutches.
As someone who twice helped the Whites into the Premier League, under the stewardship of Colin Todd in 1997 and then Sam Allardyce four years later, it comes as a ringing endorsement when arguably the club’s greatest-ever Dane says he likes what he sees of the current crop.
Frandsen was wearing the colours of new employers Brondby last Thursday night as he watched Dougie Freedman’s side scrap out a 1-1 draw.
But the former midfielder, who made more than 300 appearances for Bolton in a fine career, was pleased to see his club in good shape.
“It was nice to see the boys again. It’s still my club,” he told The Bolton News. “They have been down there (in the Championship) for two years now, and they know how tough it is going to be.
“You can see the manager knows what it takes but I saw a good side today and all the players wanted to show him they had the desire to play in that first game of the season.
“I think there are some good signs. It is so tough to get out of the league but you need luck and you need to work very hard.”
Frandsen drew comparisons between Freedman’s side and the team promoted at the turn of the millennium under Allardyce, which had been shorn of some of its bigger names because of financial issues but who somehow always found a way to get a result.
“It is similar,” he said. “It’s a good sign. Sometimes when that happens, some players shine that you maybe don’t expect.
“Last time Bolton came over to Brondby was in 2000, and we got promoted that year. Hopefully that happens again.”
Frandsen’s appearance has barely changed from the time when he marshalled the Wanderers midfield but these days he is helping the next generation of top Danish talent into the Brondby first team.
He took on the post of Under-19s manager only a week before Bolton’s visit, having managed First Division side HB Koge for the last two seasons.
“It’s a good move for me,” he said. “I enjoyed being at HB Koge in the First Division.
“This is a big job coming here and working with some of the best young players we have in the country, hopefully I can give them something to learn and get better.
“The stadium, the training facilities, the support – it is a great club to work at.”
Brondby are on their way back up after a difficult spell in their history which nearly saw them go bankrupt.
But the fallen giants have now attracted new investment that has helped them bring in top stars such as ex-Wanderers striker Johan Elmander, and bigger things are expected this season.
“There is definitely expectation here. People expect us to finish in the top three this season,” Frandsen said.
“I think we will – we have some good young players and some good experienced ones too, like Elmander.
“I think we will fight with FC Copenhagen. It’s a big rivalry and they have been dominant for a few years but now it’s our turn to get back up.
“That will be good for Danish football because we know it will be a full house here and there, a couple of miles away.”
Brondby welcome Liverpool on Wednesday for their final warm-up game before the start of the Superliga – a game that has attracted massive local interest because it sees the return of homegrown hero Daniel Agger.
Frandsen is also looking forward to beginning his new career with the youth team, aiming to apply the same principles that saw him make such a success of his former post.
As a player he turned out for four foreign clubs – Wanderers, Blackburn and Wigan in England and Lille in France.
And he fancies the idea of returning to English soil in a coaching capacity one day in the future.
“I’d still like to coach abroad at some point,” he said. “Just as I did as a player, I try to do the best job I can for the place I am at the time, and if you do well, all the good things happen for you.”