Andrews pens three-year Bolton deal

Keith Andrews is about to be unveiled as a Bolton Wanderers player after putting pen to paper on a three-year deal.

The 31-year-old Republic of Ireland midfielder might be exchanging life in the Premier League with West Brom for a Championship club but he believes that, under manager Owen Coyle, everything is geared towards Bolton making a swift return to the top-flight.

And the Dubliner says it was Coyle’s enthusiasm to do the deal which was a significant factor in his decision to opt for the Reebok, after Celtic had also expressed an interest in signing a player who was generally regarded as one of Ireland’s better performers at Euro 2012.

“Owen Coyle was straight on the phone making contact even before the Euros,” said Andrews.

“He said he wanted to sign me and not on the basis of whether I’d have a good Euros or not. He said he wanted me to come and be a big player for them and that he wanted characters in the dressing room.

“He’d had an interest in me before but circumstances didn’t quite work out then. But when I spoke to him this time about what he wanted for the club he made it clear that the goal was to go straight back up into the Premier League — and stay there. So he really did sell the club to me very well and definitely made me feel wanted.

“I’d never really met him properly before. Obviously, I’d played against his teams and I’d always shake hands with him going off the pitch but any time I’d read about him or seen him in interviews he always struck me as a very passionate man who loves the game. So I’m looking forward to working for a new manager who obviously wants me. Hopefully, I’ll learn a lot from him and be a big player for Bolton.”

* Don’t miss Keith Andrews’ exclusive column in the Irish Examiner tomorrow, Saturday, when he offers an insider’s view of Ireland’s disappointing Euro 2012 and reflects on the lessons to be learned ahead of the World Cup qualifying campaign.

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