Date: 1st August 2017 at 11:14pm
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The worst kept secret of the transfer window was revealed today when Bolton announced the double loan signing of West Ham duo Josh Cullen and Reece Burke until January.

Cullen has played most of his league football (all bar one league game) for Bradford, having spent the last two seasons on loan at Valley Parade, the first of those under Phil Parkinson. He`s seen as a technically good central midfielder, although just the one goal in his professional career would suggest he`s coming more for his build-up play, unless Mark Beevers or David Wheater teach him how to finish. He has also been capped for the Republic of Ireland under 21 side, and his arrival at the Macron has annoyed a lot of Bradford fans, which can only be a good thing.

Burke also spent time with Parkinson in West Yorkshire, earning the Bantams` Player of the Year award in the 2015-16 season. He had a crack at the Championship at Wigan last season, but injury restricted him to 10 games with that lot.

The two signings have been in the pipeline all summer, and seemed to have excited a lot of Bolton fans. I personally wouldn`t want to get too carried away. The disappointment of a lot of Hammers fans that they aren`t going to be part of Slaven Bilic`s first team plans is quite good to see – both players are obviously highly thought of and they`ve both played under-age international football. But Burke has played 10 Championship games, while Cullen hasn`t played in this division before. They may need time and they`re here to improve. They could do that and be excellent in the end. But like the club as a whole, they`re effectively making a step-up in division.

It`s good to have the two extra bodies in the spine of the squad, regardless, especially as it looks more likely we`ll be using a back three often. Still need that left back though.

 

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