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Bolton Wanderers’ excellent season last time around in League One saw them achieve automatic promotion by finishing 2nd behind runaway winners Sheffield United. Their 86-point haul would be enough to win the title in most of the seasons and it has brought them a Championship return in quick style.
Arguably, their current squad would do just fine in the Championship, given how wide open it looks this time, but the club know that they have to strengthen before the season kicks off if they want to do well. Oliver Burke has been mentioned as a very ambitious signing but that seems unrealistic. So here we look at two other players the club may get in for their pre-season programme.
The Toon’s England under-20 forward has once again been in World Cup action for his country, but will head back to Tyneside soon looking for answers on his future. Despite his family’s desire for him to stay at the club he supported as a boy, it seems like he will move on and another crack at the Championship looks about right for him now.
Armstrong spent last season on loan at Barnsley, where, despite starting well, he failed to find his best form. Although he undoubtedly has more to give, that season seems to have put an end to his Premier League ambitions for the short term. Bolton can look to bring him in on a season long loan with a view of a permanent transfer in a year’s time. It seems like a wise move to me.
He can be a deadly finisher and he doesn’t look to be below Championship level to say the least. A reasonable wage offer and the promise of first XI football might be enough to land the young forward.
Having spent last season on loan at Fleetwood Town in League One, Bolton had a chance to get a good look at the Manchester-born midfielder close up and obviously liked what they saw. It appears now that Liverpool are willing to let the 21-year-old go on a permanent basis and Bolton look as though they are at the head of the queue.
Only a year ago, Liverpool turned down a bid of £1million for Brannagan’s services from Bolton’s north-west rivals Wigan Athletic, so he has been a man on demand. His 12 games for Fleetwood appear to have been enough for Bolton to put a bid together for a player who they feel, has a very big future in the game.