WANDERERS are poised to make a decision on whether they will sign Sweden international full-back Mikael Dyrestam.
Dougie Freedman has been chasing the defender since the summer but will decide today if he is in the right physical shape to play Championship football and solve his long-term search for a full-back.
Dyrestam, capped twice by his country, has battled back from a serious knee injury and is believed to have offers from a handful of other European clubs.
But having battled hard to get the 22-year-old to Euxton, where he has trained since the start of the week, Freedman revealed yesterday that he is now close to making a choice on whether to offer the ex-IFK Gothenburg star a contract.
“We really like him,” Freedman said ahead of tomorrow’s clash with Watford. “It isn’t so much a trial because he has really only been doing fitness tests but we have him for one more day and then I’ll see where we are.
“He has impressed me but I know him anyway. I have seen him a few times in Gothenburg and watched him play.
“He has got huge potential – a couple of caps already – and he is the profile of the type of player I want to sign.
“Is he ready to come into the team right now? Probably not, and that is a little concern of mine.
“He plays different positions though his favourite position is full back. He hasn't played for a couple of months because Gothenburg have been off with their winter break.
“My concern is if he could come in and help us right now.”
Freedman has been on Dyrestam’s trail since he left Gothenburg at the end of the Swedish season last autumn but it has taken until now to bring him to the UK.
With Marc Tierney out until April and Tim Ream still seen as a stop-gap at left-back, the scene appears set for Dyrestam to make an impact, provided he can prove his fitness to the club’s medical staff.
And for Freedman it would mark the end of a long fight to get the versatile defender to the club.
“I can only say we’re working extremely hard behind the scenes to put things in place,” he said. “The IT department and scouting department working so hard to find the young talent all over Europe.
“I know it’s not translated onto the pitch right now with results. But it is only a matter of getting results and the whole club will start spiralling upwards.
“We started looking at Dyrestam live last August. Eight times we have watched him and I have been over a couple of times.
“We have built up a relationship with these people so if he did become available we would be closer to the deal than if we had just jumped in yesterday.
“It’s been a long process. He has been here to see if he can step in for Saturday or if he needs another month or another two months.”