Transfer Deadline Day passed by Bolton Wanderers in slightly less dramatic fashion yesterday than in previous years. There was no last-minute flurry of signings either temporary or permanent, instead just the single arrival was confirmed - a two year deal given to ex Brighton and Cardiff City winger Craig Noone.
It’s one thing knocking social media on the head, but its another trying to keep up with transfer deadline day without it. Fortunately, I was following both ours and Marc Iles’ deadline blog online and the same name kept cropping up - that of Jay Spearing.
Now obviously, the player has left and has written the obligatory farewell message - he didn’t write it on an iphone and then screenshot that, which is one mistake, but I always thought his departure was fairly unequivocal in its completeness. The door was closed and that was that, everyone can move on.
Everyone it seems but us Bolton fans. Maybe its the poor start to the season, or maybe its the obvious lack of a defensive screen which is causing us to defend like we did in 2015, but again and again I saw messages posted to both blogs begging for the return of our former captain.
There is no doubt that on his day, former Liverpool man Spearing has what it takes to be a good player at this level - we saw that when he first joined the club on loan back when we were just about one of the better teams in the Championship. However, it is also fair to say that since that season we have rarely seen him hit those heights again.
So, consistency aside, there is also the gigantic inflatable elephant sat over in the corner just behind your mum’s Princess Diana memorial plate - finance. As everyone knows, Wanderers are fighting with the EFL to get rid of this bastard embargo which has been in place for the best part of two years. As such, we are unable to pay a fee for loanees or permanent deals, and are restricted to offering free agents a maximum wage of £4,500 per week - pie in the sky for us mere mortals, but I’m sure Neymar earns that whilst he has his morning dump.
Would Spearing sign for us on such a pittance? If you believe internet tittle tattle, that amount would be around 20% of his regular weekly pay when he was under contract with the club.
Personally I would love to see him back, but my reasons are that of desperation. We need someone to put in the tackles and to protect the defensive players who have struggled since the start of the season. Be it Jay Spearing, Jason Lowe (yes I know he has since signed for Birmingham City) or anyone else, I really don’t care, but I would hope that Phil Parkinson has someone in mind.
The deadline might have passed for under contract signings, but we have a bit of time before the free transfer deadline passes and that could be where our opportunity lies. I just hope we don’t leave it too late.