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Dougie Freedman to ease Stu Holden back into the team

Michael Steele

We certainly don't want the excitement of seeing Stu Holden back in a Bolton Wanderers shirt get the best of us. There were more than a few members of the fan base clamoring for his immediate return to the first team. Holden has been out of action (barring one Carling Cup match) for 21 months. That's a long time to go from 0-90 minutes in the course of a relative blink.

Because of that realization, manager Dougie Freedman is more than keen to ease Stu back into action . Despite dropping a hint that the American midfielder could be in line for appearance against Sunderland on Tuesday, Holden is still some ways off of that.

Speaking to the Bolton News, Dougie described his plans for Stu:

"I think he needs one more good game at 80 minutes before we can make that decision.

"He'll then need one or two at 90 minutes before we can think about starting him. But there is no reason why he cannot be around the first-team squad. It's unfair to put any pressure on him to get playing but as we have all seen, he's getting very close.

"In an ideal world I'd give him two more full reserve team games, but we don't live in an ideaL world. "We live in one where we have got to win games, so we have got to make the right decisions."

Holden played a good 65 minutes for Bolton's U21 side against Oldham Athletic. Click through here for a bit of video from that match along with Holden's thoughts.