The summer holidays. Breaking bad. A Bradford City play-off run. All good things must come to an end, and often they end in tears. This week, the club announced that Lawrie Wilson will not be offered a new contract at the Macron. And so ended another infatuation with a Wanderers player for yours truly.
Favourite players to come and go include McAteer, Curcic, Frandsen, McGinlay, Gudjohnsen, Robinson, Nolan, Davies, Holden, and now Lawrie Wilson.
Wilson's season was ended early by a hamstring injury, before which he'd arguably hit his best form for the club. Poorly treated by former manager Neil Lennon and farmed out to Peterborough on loan so that the now Hibernian manager could play our most creative midfielder at right back, Wilson came back into the fold under Phil Parkinson and was a key part of a sturdy defence which set the pace in the promotion run-in. His goal at home to Port Vale literally made me scream. It is up there with my favourite moments for the season. In the infamous words of Andy Gray; what a hit son, what a hit.
As little as three weeks ago, he'd expressed a desire to stay at the club. He admitted to feeling "like a fan" in the run up to the end of the season, and his celebrations on the Macron pitch on April 30th certainly confirmed that he shared in our joy. Lawrie has been a Wanderer for just two years, but you could see what that promotion meant to him.
Here are three reasons why Wilson should still be at Bolton Wanderers:
Those luscious locks just add a certain je ne sais quoi to a marauding run down the touch line. Hands down the most beautiful man in League One. The ying to David Wheater's yang. Season ticket sales will certainly fall without our number 23.
I can't look back and think that Wilson ever let us down with one of his performances. The odd screamer aside (Peterborough at home last season, Port Vale this term), you could confidently back a solid performance from our Lawrie regardless of his opponent.
Wilson's best form for us came just before his season-ending injury. I can't help but feel that he earned the opportunity to have another crack at Championship level. A real shame.
3) Full backs
That's now three right backs released by Wanderers since the season ended: Lawrie Wilson, Lewis Buxton and Reece Wabara. We're now without a right back, and similarly struggling at left back having released Dean Moxey, and Andy Taylor returned to parent club Wigan Athletic (though he has since been released by The Latics so watch this space).
I feel that we need to be malleable next season so that we can play either 3 or 4 at the back. That being said, the less change to the solid back four of the season just gone, the better. Releasing Lawrie is a roll of the dice I personally wouldn't be prepared to take.
Ok, I know I said three reasons to keep Lawrie, but I can't write about my love for him without mentioning his present to me in November of last year.
I was celebrating in the days following becoming engaged to my lovely woman, and saw a video had popped up on our very own Lion of Vienna Suite Twitter account. Wilson had agreed to appear on camera congratulating me on my news. It was a lovely touch from a classy gentleman, and topped off a fantastic week.
Goodbye my Lawrie. Goodbye my prince. I'm sure you'll make some other fans very happy. All good things come to and end. Even this.