FA rule dictates that in order to gain a work permit, non-European players must play for a country ranked in the top 50 in the preceeding two years.
Australia have hovered at the 53rd spot, meaning the next FIFA rankings will determine whether Milligan is eligible for a work permit or not. Club secretary Simon Marland spoke to Australian site The World Game, stating:
"If Mark doesn't automatically qualify to get a work permit for any club in England, then the chances are he won't get one," However (with the FIFA rankings due out) there is a possibility (he might).
The regulations have changed from 18 months ago when things were more relaxed (a ranking of 75 or under was permissible)." It's not just Bolton Wanderers, I am sure a lot of other clubs have looked at him simply because he's a regular for Australia and captained them (twice) at the Confederations Cup."
If Jay Spearing doesn't sign a new deal and Milligan fails to gain a work permit, Wanderers will have to cast their eye on a new defensive midfielder.