sport

Holden still has Bolton future

Dougie Freedman will give Stuart Holden every opportunity to earn an extended stay on the playing staff at Bolton Wanderers.

The injury-ravaged midfielder has seen his latest comeback bid rocked by another knee complaint.

He is now heading back to his native America to undergo a fourth operation in three years and discuss his options with a specialist surgeon.

Bolton boss Freedman is refusing to give up on the 28-year-old, though, and will not discuss a possible non-playing role at the Reebok Stadium while a return to competitive action is still possible.

He told the Bolton News: "As long as I'm at this football club - and I'll speak for Phil Gartside and Eddie Davies too - Stu will be a part of it.

"With everyone's best intention, Stu will be a part of this club as a player, on the pitch, playing. There are many different ideas we've got with other things, but right now I'm backing him because he wants to carry on playing.

"You come across people at football clubs that are here for money, for the location because it's just around the corner, or they are coming to the end of their career or they are using us as a stepping stone.

"But people like Stuart are the complete opposite, he doesn't talk about his contract, he wants to know how the younger players are doing and why we're doing different stuff in training.

"I want him here for many, many years to come."