Bolton Wanderers manager Ian Evatt has suggested that the club would welcome both Jack Wilshere and Daniel Sturridge to the club with open arms, but doubts whether they have the finances to sign them.
It has been a very difficult period on and off the field for both Sturridge and Wilshere in recent years.
The pair remain without clubs now after their most recent spells with Trabzonspor and Bournemouth respectively came to an end.
Both players are highly regarded at Bolton after they both made major impacts for the Trotters in the Premier League during respective loan spells from Chelsea and Arsenal.
However, with Bolton now being even mentioned with links to them while they are in League One it shows how far the two former England internationals have fallen.
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Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Evatt suggested that Bolton would certainly welcome players into the their squad with the quality of both Sturridge and Wilshere.
However, he also doubted whether they would have the money to fund those moves.
He said: “He’d be lovely, we’d appreciate that. There are one or two out there – Mr Wilshere and people like that – we’d welcome them with open arms.
“We are not going to be looking to overspend. We want to get the right players, the right characters to play the right way for Bolton.
“We are always open and we’ll always look but what we learned from last season is that when you taking in free transfers who haven’t really had a pre-season or any game time then a lot of them can break down pretty quickly or you are taking two or three months to get then up to speed and by that time it is nearly January.
“It probably isn’t something we will look to do unless something exceptional becomes available to us.”
Signing either Wilshere or Sturridge on free transfers would of course be tremendous for Bolton at this stage with the club in League One.
However, the pair remain available for a reason and they have not been showing their best form consistently for one reason or another for a while now.
Both players were exceptional in their loan spells with Bolton earlier in their careers and they have both been close to the very top of the game at spells in their careers.
It is sad to see how far both Sturridge and Wilshere have fallen in terms of their career trajectory over recent years, but that is what happens sometimes when talented players suffer recurrent injury issues as they both have throughout their careers.
Bolton already have a strong squad really for their League One campaign and Evatt’s comments here suggest that they are not overly concerned about needing to use the free-agents market to bolster their squad further.