Bolton Wanderers boost strikeforce with Middlesbrough forward Lukas Jutkiewicz
MANAGER Dougie Freedman hopes to hand loan striker Lukas Jutkiewicz his Wanderers debut at QPR tonight, provided his registration is completed in time.
Freedman made his move for a player he has long admired yesterday and confirmed a deal with the 24-year-old’s parent-club Middlesbrough was “95 per cent” done at his pre-match press conference.
And while it would be throwing the former Everton man in at the deep end should he figure tonight, the Scot has no qualms about involving Jutkiewicz if he is available.
David Ngog’s departure to Swansea City on a permanent deal was rubber-stamped yesterday leaving Freedman with just Craig Davies as an option up front before Jutkiewicz’s arrival.
Ngog played 91 times and scored 16 goals after joining from Liverpool in 2011 for £4million.
Freedman told The Bolton News: “Jutkiewicz is someone I have admired for a while.
“I have known him since he was a young player at Everton so I have known about him for a long time.
“I’ve always felt if he was to find the right club and get the right kind of service, he can be one of the top strikers in this division.
“The rush is not for the QPR game. I am a big believer in slowly bedding players in but with the pedigree and experience he has, then I would not hesitate to involve him.
“It would be nice to have some support in there alongside Craig Davies.
“I thought he did well on Saturday after being out a long time.
“He’s a player I brought here and he needs a run of games – that’s his problem.
“If he does and stays fit, he can do well for us like he showed on Saturday.”
Freedman is still hopeful of more transfer business before the window closes at 11pm on Friday and another forward could be added, as well as some defensive cover.
The Scot knows he needs reinforcements at the back but believes extra firepower, with Jermaine Beckford currently sidelined, is just as important.
He added: “You look at QPR and Charlie Austin. He has scored important goals for them at crucial times.
“It is pretty much the difference.
“We need to get a bit more firepower in.
“You get one goalscorer in and you are up there, two and you are right in the mix.
“Hopefully, the addition of Lukas and maybe another striker will help us in the second half of the season.
“We are looking for cover at the back as well and have identified who we would like and it is a waiting game now.
“Everyone knows the financial situation where we can’t just go out and spend but we want the right types to come in if possible.”
Freedman has no new injury concerns ahead of tonight’s Loftus Road clash and confirmed Mark Davies will return after being rested at the weekend.