Bolton Wanderers defender Alex Baptiste has been in the news lately. He recently defended his wife's honor in a nightclub, but that is not what I am concerned with. The former Blackpool man has been linked with a move to our Lancashire neighbors Blackburn Rovers.
Baptiste signed with Bolton just about a year ago after his contract with Blackpool FC expired. He is still only 28 years old, and the (allegedly) versatile defender can (allegedly) play all across the back line. Blackburn only missed the playoffs by a couple of points last season, and a leaky defense was the primary reason why. It's not surprising that they are looking at defenders.
Baptiste still has two years to run on the three year deal he signed with Bolton, so there would be a fee involved. The player had a knack for giving away penalties at inopportune moments, although he did have a decent year overall at the Reebok. I am of two minds on this one. On one hand, even if Baptiste is not a regular starter this coming season, his versatility and experience would be valuable as depth for Dougie Freedman's squad. On the other hand, I would really like to see some of our young defenders (Hayden White, Oscar Threlkeld) given a real chance to claim a spot. With a reliable veteran option available, I am not sure Freedman will let the lads loose.
All things considered, it probably comes down to the fee. A hundred thousand pounds is not going to provide any real assistance in buying players. Having Baptiste in the squad is worth more than that. But if it's a million, or if it's whatever amount is needed to finalize another signing (perhaps a striker from the northeast), Freedman will probably take it.
What do you think? Does Baptiste have a future at the Macron Stadium?