Date: 9th May 2012 at 3:52pm
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Klasnic on the move, really, really slowly. Jussi and Stu Holden’s lovely hair? Not so much. Probably maybe.

Five days. In five days time we will be playing Stoke City in an attempt to save our Premier League lives. Five days is not a long time. Five days ago, I was quoting Die Hard in an article. It doesn`t seem all that long ago, does it? Time is doing its old trick of making you think it is moving really slowly when, in fact, it is coming up quickly behind you and will be only too happy to push your coffin into the flames.

I hate time.

It is at this time of the week that I sit here and scratch my head. Just what do I write about in the midweek when we haven`t got a game? I can usually drag something out but it meanders all over the place and when I go back to it a month or so later even I think “Wah?” Not today friends. Final day relegation battles tend to up your presence in the media and this week is no exception.

Except?it`s all transfer talk and none of it is about who is coming in (unless you include Gregg Wylde, whose clearance papers are still sitting on Blatter`s desk while he barters another deal with a well know caffeine based drinks company.) Yesterday, we heard that Paul Robinson was on the radar of Cardiff and today we have news on not one, not two, but three Bolton players and where they may be plying their trade next year.

First off, Ivan “I ain`t running for that” Klasnic who has dismissed reports that, even if he does slope off, slowly, to another club this summer, it will not be HNK Rijeka who play in the top division in Croatia. And for good reason, seeing as how they themselves are battling relegation and have gone through four coaches THIS season, proof, if proof were needed, that changing your manager doesn`t necessarily save you.

Thinking of the amount of jumping through hoops with the finances that the club had to do to sign Klasnic permanently in the first place, it does seem likely that wherever we end up he will leave. He is thirty two now and the manager is looking to reduce both the wage bill and the average age of the squad, although how this got Robbie Blake a new contract is still a matter of confusion. There is no doubt that Klasnic is one of the best finishers in the Premier League but his workrate is too little for a club in our position and we simply cannot afford him, both financially and tactically. It wouldn`t surprise me, however, for him to finish spectacularly on Sunday.

Elswhere, two players have both said that they intend to stay at the club. The first, Jussi Jääskeläinen, is now thirty seven and unless a Championship club wants to come in for him, and that could still be West Ham depending on how they fare in the play off final, at his age, and with his family settled in the area, you can imagine him staying at the club until he is finally overtaken by either Rob Lainton or Jay Lynch. As it is, the club need an experienced keeper if Adam Bogdan has an injury or has a Jussi moment and slaps a defender in the face.

Of course, Jussi will still believe that he has a chance of regaining his number one position but Bogdan has been stable enough since having a run in the team for that to be a false hope. However, they could go mano a mano naked on a rug in front of a fire like Alan Bates and Ollie Reed in Women in Love because, as Jussi says, Bogdan is submissive and respectful.

On second thoughts, best leave that to the imagination. Or not, even.

The other player saying that he will definitely be staying at T`Reebok is Stuart Holden. Whilst this will be good news for Bolton fans who have taken Holden to their hearts for his sheer fandom of the club, sitting with fans and the like, it wouldn`t come as any great surprise if no one came in for him anyway. Holden was a punt for OC when he came across the pond in January 2010 and would remain so for any other Premier League club. It is easy to forget that for the amount of time he has been at the club he has been available for selection for just thirty four of the one hundred and four fixtures that the club has played since he made his debut. I`m no maths wizard but that is less than a third of the games played.

This is no fault of Holden`s. However, Premier League clubs will look at him, notice that he has just recovered from major knee surgery that has kept him out for seventeen months. A Premier League club will look at that and say “no thanks”. For whatever reason, Holden is known of but still isn`t really known. Which can only be good news for us, wherever we are.

And to the Fantasy League news and, with just one game to go, the same three remaining at the top. Pretty boring then. It is Bradley Lane`s to lose. And I promise, right here and now, that both this years and last years will get their prizes. Honest. Really, really honest. Team of the week were Adam Brabbin`s SKD Wanderers. Don`t worry, he`s still in the bottom hundred.

So, with no further news on whether Mark Cluntenfart will be our ref on Sunday, although he will, we`ll leave you until tomorrow. And remember, if you’re not a part of the solution, you’re a part of the problem. Quit being a part of the problem and put the other guy back on.

 

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