Ian Evatt admits Bolton Wanderers could have to draw a line under signing Kyle Dempsey this transfer window but have irons in the fire in the loan market as contignecy plans.
Wanderers are seeking to add the Gillingham captain to add to their business done this window so far.
Bolton have made five new acquisitions in January so far with the permanent signings of forwards Dion Charles and Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, as well as midfielder Aaron Morley.
READMORE: Bolton Wanderers boss Ian Evatt on Sunderland, transfer window latest and team selection
This has been supplemented by the loan signings of James Trafford and Marlon Fossey.
Two more players are being sought, including Dempsey, with Gillingham having a bid lodged from Wanderers for the midfielder’s services.
Evatt admits that if the signing of Dempsey does not happen this month, it could be reviewed in the summer when he is out of contract at Priestfield as things stand.
And for right now, Wanderers have options in the loan market to pursue if the signing of Dempsey does not happen in the coming days, though Bolton remains hopeful of a deal getting over the line on that front.
Evatt told the Manchester Evening News: “They can happen really quickly. The player we want to sign permanently is obviously well-publicised.
“If that doesn’t happen, we do know there are certain players out of contract in the summer and we’ll re-visit it again then. In the meantime, there are quite a few players out there looking for loans who are experienced and have not been playing regular football.
“They could come here and do a good job for us. We’ve got plans but we’re very hopeful we can get the player over the line.”
Wanderers have paid transfer fees already this month for the services of Charles and Morley and could do so again with Dempsey.
These are players who Wanderers could have picked up on a free transfer in the summer upon the expiration of their contracts at their respective clubs.
However, Evatt explained that on the free and open market, salary can become an issue with competition from other clubs, which is why the Wanderers hierarchy gave the green light for getting these deals over the line now, which the Bolton goss is extremely grateful for. .
He said: “We could have (waited until the summer) but, even though we’ve spent money this window, what we’ve done is strategic and smart. Dion (Charles) for instance had offers over a million pounds within the last year and we’ve paid a sum much less than that.
“What we didn’t want to happen is it to go to a free, open market and then the salary becomes an issue for us. We’ve tried to get ahead of the game and make things happen in the here and now to avoid competition, to avoid it being an auction.
“We’ve worked very hard on these signings. The board have been amazing to do what they’ve done for me and the rest of the club.
“Two years ago, we nearly lost this football club and now we’re signing players for money again. That’s a credit to everybody.
“We’re trying to be strategic, we’re trying to make plans and we’re doing the best we can. We’re really pleased with what we’ve done this window.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.