Bolton Wanderers have been linked with a move for Fleetwood’s England Under 19 stopper Billy Crellin, as reported by the Bolton News.
The Trotters have already been busy this summer, making a collection of signings including Antoni Sarcevic and Eoin Doyle, with more business expected. However, manager Ian Evatt has indicated he may be close to recruiting more, saying: “For now we’re continuing to sign players, have negotiations with those we want to sign, and hopefully we’ll have a few more in the building by the end of the week.”
Crellin has appeared just five times for Fleetwood, with loan spells at Chorley and FC United of Manchester making up his senior experience. the 20-year-old has represented England up to Under 19 level, with one appearance for the Under 17 side which won the World Cup n 2017.
His move to Bolton would be a season-long loan according to the report, which would fill the vacant keeper’s slot at the University of Bolton Stadium. At present, the only stopper on the club’s books is 18-year-old Matthew Alexander, who has made just a single outing in his short career. However, with Bolton not operating an Under 23 side this season, chances may be limited for multiple keepers, suggesting that Crellin could be the potential first choice.
Bolton will start this season in League Two, the first time they’ve been in the basement division since a brief one-season stay in 1987/88 and only the second time in their history.
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Bolton fans might be a little apprehensive if Crellin was signed as the main stopper, as fans labour under the misapprehension that young keepers are too inexperienced for the hustle and bustle of League Two.
Kieran O’Hara disproved that theory when he appeared for Macclesfield, and Dean Henderson impressed, albeit on League One, with Shrewsbury. A young keeper is one route which we expected several clubs to go down, saving on an outgoing by drafting in a loan.
Crellin has a big future ahead of him if he can get senior games and he would make a decent acquisition for the Trotters.