Ok maybe it's a little early to justify that subheading, but reports from his first team debut where encouraging and I have even seen him credited with a man of the match award!
Nonetheless Holding made his first team bow in a match which I think it's fair to say has brought my expectations for the season crashing back down to earth. Now in fairness Burton Albion seemed lucky, the stats appeared to show Bolton dominating and the goal was somewhat fortunate. But the inability to see off the League One club must be seen as worrying even if it is in the shadow of an impressive opening day in the Championship.
Now onto the main point of this Rob Holding!
Holding joined Bolton aged seven and has worked his way through Bolton's youth system becoming the latest of the academy graduates to make the move up to first team football at the Macron (still feels strange calling it that).
Holding made nine appearances scoring twice for the under 21 side last season before spending the back end of the season on loan to Bury, who like Wigan seem to have a bit of a fetish for Bolton players these days... Holding though only managed one appearance during that spell.
Indications are that Holding can play on either side of a centre back partnership or at right back. Most sources I can find only seemed to list him as a centre back, but the reports were that he was brought into Bury to cover for the suspended Joe Riley (now where have I heard that name before?). This admittedly small level of versatility should be useful as I think it's fair to say he will mainly be used as cover for the time being, and despite my excitement at the signing of our very own right back Lawrie Wilson he does remain our only one.
Once injuries heal (and hopefully stay healed) I think it is fair to say that Holding will fall in behind the likes of Derik Osede, David Wheater and Tim Ream (who of course may not be at the club for much longer), along with Dorian Dervite and Prince-Desir Gouano. As such I suspect we will not see him start another match until maybe an FA cup date, but then again I'm not sure anyone can rule out all of our other defenders being injured at the same time at some point this season...
It is interesting to see him maybe slipping ahead of Quade Taylor in Lennon's plans. It can only be good for the development of our young defenders (also including Alex Finney (whose namesake played in the 1923 and 1929 FA cup finals for the club so quite a name to live up to), Oscar Threlkeld and Andy Kellett) to have competition for any first team places up for grabs. This should hopefully push all of those players to excel both on the training ground and therefore on the pitch for the first team.
Holding playing may have had something to do with the quite remarkable claim on the Lion of Vienna Suite's twitter page last night as to why Prince was handed his watching briefs.
Revelation that Prince Gouano is not in the squad because he had to go home for a change of undies. No seriously #BWFC— Lion of Vienna Suite (@LionOfViennaSte) August 11, 2015
(See what I did there? No, well I guess now I'm the one caught with my pants down! Seriously I can keep going all day with these but I think it's in everyone's benefit that I stop there...)
Having recently had to contend with young person problems such as this it must be quite a step up to first team football for Holding!
How can my sister deny being in my room, but still put a snapchat story of her taking a selfie in my room— Rob Holding (@RHolding95) March 24, 2015
But on a more serious note it is very encouraging to see another academy product make the step up to the first team and have a solid debut. I'm sure there will be bad days in his transition to first team football, but once again it shows that the future may well be bright at Bolton Wanderers!
By Jamie Moss.