'Quality, Superb', Two Words to Describe Keith Andrews

  • September 23, 2013 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/dd129

'I would be fuming if I was a Bolton fan seeing the form he has been in.' That is the view of a Brighton supporter on Wanderers midfielder Keith Andrews.

Andrews, written off by many Trotters fans before he had even kicked a ball for the club, moved to the south coast last month on a season-long loan deal. With the money freed up by getting him off the wage bill, Bolton went on to replace the Republic of Ireland international with last year's Player of the Season - Jay Spearing.

The two deals were seen as a win-win situation by the majority of Wanderers supporters, who saw their club sign a popular player and get shut of an unpopular one within the space of just 24 hours.

Prior to Saturday's 3-1 defeat at Brighton & Hove Albion, we went to Seagulls website North Stand Chat to ask a variety of questions in the build-up to the game. Among others, one of those questions was:

'Keith Andrews is currently on loan at the AMEX from Bolton. What do you think of him?'

To our surprise, many of the Albion supporters who responded were very complimentary about the 33-year-old. Similar to Bolton fans when Andrews moved to the Reebok Stadium, his move to the AMEX was met with uncertainty. However, in contrast to how he is viewed in the north west, a series of impressive displays have seen him win over his doubters to the extent that Seagulls followers are already contemplating a permanent deal for the player.

Here are just a select few of the replies we received:

'At the time I thought it was a decent signing and perhaps some shrewd business as he could add a bit of something to our midfield. Wow, I was wrong! 'A bit of something?' - He has been nothing short of quality in every game he's played so far.'

'Hideous decision to loan him out to us, not that we are complaining. He is just superb and was a vital factor in our last two clean sheets, playing in a deeper role than usual in Bridcutt's absence. Hope we get him permanently. I would be fuming if I was a Bolton fan seeing the form he has been in.'

'Honestly, he's been fantastic with us and, for me, he brings the quality and experience that I feel we missed last year and could be the difference between gaining promotion and missing out. I would be absolutely delighted if we could take him off your hands.'

'He's better than the bloke you signed to replace him! Can we make it permanent please?'

'Class act - always showing for the ball and re-distributing it in a sensible and timely manner.'

'Skeptical when we signed him but he seems to be proving people wrong. He seems a good signing on what we've seen so far.'

Having joined Bolton on a free transfer from West Bromwich Albion in June 2012, Andrews played 29 times in his debut campaign at the Reebok but failed to find his best form. After playing through a troublesome Achilles injury for a couple of months, the problem finally took its toll in January when he was forced off the field in a goalless draw at Crystal Palace. Andrews would miss the entirety of the second half of the season, and, after seeing a specialist, spent the summer rehabilitating on his own in Qatar.

With the injury behind him, the extra work and a full pre-season seemed to put him in a good position to start the new season. Andrews featured in Bolton's first two games, a 1-1 draw at Burnley and a 3-1 Capital One Cup win at Shrewsbury Town, before leaving the club on August 10th.

Bolton currently sit bottom of the Championship table, after their worst start to a season in 111 years. Players have been criticised for a lack of heart, while Andrews, an unspectacular but solid player, has been showing the type of grit and determination Wanderers are desperately missing. Unfortunately for them, he's doing it in the colours of another club - one who comfortably beat Bolton without him on Saturday.

Another player who was previously written off by Trotters fans is Tim Ream. The United States international struggled to adapt to life in English football following a move from New York Red Bulls in January 2012, but has recently impressed in a defensive midfield role that has seen him win four successive Man of the Match polls.

Andrews will return to Bolton next summer, with another 12 months left on his contract. If he continues to impress at the AMEX, should Brighton fans be granted their wish of a permanent deal or, maybe, just maybe, should he be given an opportunity to win over his critics at the Reebok?

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
1 Accrington Stanley 0 0
2 Barnsley 0 0
3 Bolton Wanderers 0 0
4 Bristol Rovers 0 0
5 Burton Albion 0 0
View Full Standings >>

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