Premier League Transfers – Bolton and Fulham

by Dejon

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

Wanderers manager Owen Coyle will begin his first full season in charge with two familiar players brought in.

Veteran striker Robbie Blake has joined from his old side Burnley and winger Martin Petrov also chose to stay in Lancashire after a free transfer move from Manchester City after his contract at Eastlands expired.

Blake scored a stunning volley against eventual runners-up Manchester United in Burnley’s first Premier League home game last season – a goal that rightly proved to be the winner.

After spells at Leeds United, Birmingham City and Bradford City, Blake is keen to prove that he still has something to offer the top flight.

At 34, he is definitely in the twilight of his career.

Coyle and Bolton will hope that he can roll back the years to try and push the Trotters higher than their 14th-placed finish last year.

Fellow acquisition Petrov was reportedly on trial at Everton, but was turned away after a week.

He offers pace, skill and creativity when on form and has shown that at time over the years in the five different countries he has played in.

If he retains some of that ability, he will be a snip on a free for Bolton.

Fulham’s main activity this close season has revolved around the manager’s position, with Roy Hodgson departing for the bright lights of Anfield, the Cottagers’ immediate approach for former Tottenham Hotspur boss, Martin Jol was rebuffed.

Jol has chosen to stay with the in his current incumbency – in charge of legendary Dutch side Ajax, and it has recently transpired that it would have cost Fulham an incredible amount of money in compensation to prise the former Bayern Munich, Coventry City and West Bromwich Albion player to West London.

So, former England, Mexico, Manchester City and Ivory Coast coach Sven Goran Eriksson has jumped to the top of the forecast betting odds – and indeed some bookmakers have suspended their books, assuming that he is a shoo-in.

No matter who has the reins in time for the new season, they will be taking over a side who reached the inaugural Europa League final last May and have replaced the outgoing Chris Smalling – who has signed for Manchester United for over £10m – with former Arsenal centre-half Philippe Senderos.

The Swiss star spent the second half of last season on loan to Everton where he made two league appearances.

It remains to be seen if Hodgson calls back to his former employers for a player or two, with Brede Hangeland and Danny Murphy linked in recent times.

But until there is a manager at the helm, it is common sense that all transfers in or out will be voluntarily embargoed.

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