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Bolton Wanderers Transfer News: Who is Jem Karacan? A Reading Fan's View

We spoke to our friends at The Tilehurst End

Bolton Wanderers v Reading - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

So it seems like for once the rumour mill was spot on - Bolton Wanderers are on the brink of signing ex-Reading man Jem Karacan on a short term deal.

To get the skinny, we consulted with expert Reading blog The Tilehurst End, who gave us the rundown:

1) What Sort of Player is Jem Karacan?

To use Football Manager terminology, he's an old fashioned CM.

He's not a destroyer in front of the defence, nor is he a hugely creative player that's going to pop up in the opposition box very often. He was at his best for Reading when his job was to hassle and disrupt the opposition's midfield with a high energy performance.

He works perfectly alongside someone who can put a foot in and nick the ball, like we had with Mikele Leigertwood.

2) We Desperately Need Creativity - Can He Provide That?

I don't think you'll be getting an Andrea Pirlo, but under Nigel Adkins, Jem did start to show he could be more of a threat in the final third.

He's never been a bad passer of the ball but don't expect long diagonal pings or sublime moments of skill.

3) I Noticed He Doesn't Seem to Score Too Many, Why Do You Think That Is?

For most of his time at Reading he was used as that high-energy player in the middle that allowed two wingers and two strikers to do the bulk of the attacking work.

As mentioned, it wasn't until Adkins arrived that he was given a bit more license to get forward.

He can certainly hit a ball though, take a look at his goal at Preston a few years ago. ( about 35')

4) What Happened to Force His Exit From Reading ?

A combination of injuries, a change of management and dwindling finances. Steve Clarke had come in during Jem's long absence and only got to see about four months of his work.

With money running out the club didn't want to offer a long contract early and by the time they had the budget, Jem had already accepted a dream move to Turkey.

He told us during a two-hour interview back in December that he always wanted to stay but that he couldn't possibly turn down a three-year deal at one of his childhood clubs with the prospect of Champions League football.

5) Any Ideas Why it Didn't Work Out For Him at Galatasaray?

He was signed by the man who first scouted him for Turkey's youth teams.

When he got sacked, it all went downhill. He was virtually frozen out from last summer but his big contract made it hard to shift him.

6) And Finally, Do You Think He'll be a Good Short Term Signing for Bolton?


If you get the Jem we saw in 2013 you'll be getting a superb player who's capable of Premier League performances.

I'm not sure he'll be that good now, but he's got tons of experience and a point to prove, so at League One level he should be a very good signing.

I just hope he stays fit and healthy and can start to enjoy football again after some miserable years.

On that note, stop making me have to like Bolton, with Parky and Jem it's harder to hate you as much as I have for 22 years >:(


Thanks for that guys.

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