TIM Ream should be a Bolton Wanderers player by the end of the week.

Wanderers officials emerged from a work permit hearing in London yesterday knowing they had done enough to convince the panel that the 24-year-old New York Red Bulls central defender could both enhance Owen Coyle’s squad in particular and the Premier League in general.

With the deal between the clubs already in place and personal terms with the player agreed, it is understood the loose ends of the transfer could be tied up as early as today.

Coyle, who attended the hearing with club secretary Simon Marland and the club’s legal representatives, was confident from the start of the transfer process that he would get his man.

Now, provided there are no last-minute snags, he will be able to switch his sights to other targets, knowing his replacement for Gary Cahill, who completed his £7m transfer to Chelsea last week, is now effectively in place.

The manager’s aim is to sign at least two more players before next Tuesday’s transfer deadline and, buoyed by the manner of Wanderers’ 3-1 victory over Liverpool on Saturday, he appears confident that his January window trading can have a positive affect on squad morale as he looks to steer the Whites clear of the Premier League drop zone.

“When you lose a player of (Cahill’s) quality it could have an adverse effect but when things like that happen it can also bring a group together," Coyle said.

“Apart from him (Ream) I am also hoping to add one or two more to take us on to the second half of the season."

One of those could be the Al Nasr striker Esmael Bangoura, who is currently on African Nations Cup duty with Guinea.

Reports, denied by the United Arab Emirates Pro League Club, claimed Wanderers had already agreed a deal to sign the 27-year-old, who moved to the Gulf from French club Rennes in a £6.5m transfer in 2010, and were trying to rush through a work permit.

But while Al Nasr officials have confirmed the Bolton interest, they insist it is premature to say the transfer has been agreed, suggesting they would prefer a loan deal for the striker who played in the Ukraine with Dynamo Kiev before joining Rennes.

Al Nasr's first team director Khalid Obaid told Gulf News: “It's still open to negotiation with Bolton.

“Bangoura has to play in the African Nations and it all depends how well he does there as to when he can sure up the paper work and an English work permit. Nothing is confirmed — as of now it may take another three to four days.

“Bangoura has a contract with us until 2014. It's undecided if he'll move out on loan or via transfer, but loan is definitely our first and preferred option.

“It will be difficult to lose Bangoura permanently. We accepted he'd be missing for the African Nations and so registered other players for the next six months, but we'd like him to come back and start the next season with us. He's a good player for sure and has shown a lot of potential."