Former Leeds United ‘keeper set to be rewarded by manager Neil Lennon for his fine form
Since joining Bolton Wanderers in the Summer of 2012, following the team`s relegation from the Premier League, things haven`t always been easy for Lonergan- formerly of Preston North End and Leeds United. He was brought in to replace Jussi Jaaskelainen who had joined West Ham, following the expiry of his contract with the Trotters.
Jaaskelainen had lost his place in the Bolton team mid-way through the 2011/2012 season to young Hungarian ‘keeper, Adam Bogdan. Bogdan impressed Wanderers fans with his acrobatic displays between the sticks which found him voted as Bolton`s Player of the Season.
Due to Bogdan`s form, Lonergan always had a lot of catching up to do after being branded as not needed by Leeds, following the arrival of veteran Paddy Kenny- funnily enough also now contracted to the Trotters.
And so, first team opportunities at the Reebok/Macron Stadium had always been difficult for the former England U20 international. He was able to deputise whenever the injury-prone Bogdan was out, however he almost always has lost his place as soon as the Hungary international returned to fitness. Lonergan`s always given a good account of himself, in my opinion, and has really done very little wrong.
To be fair, Adam Bogdan has been up there amongst the best goalkeepers in the Championship and so should be starting in this division, however, since picking up an injury earlier on, Lonergan has been able to benefit from an extended run in the first team which now sees the fit Bogdan on the bench.
Neil Lennon surely seems to be a big fan of father of two Lonergan, and so it may well look like Bogdan`ll be leaving in January amidst the transfer frenzy that we so often see in this division.
Many of Lonergan`s performances this season have been incredible- shot stopping at Chelsea stand out, so do his performances against Birmingham, Brentford and more recently against Reading and Ipswich.
He looks set to stay a Wanderers` first choice goalkeeper and I think that we can have no complaints.