Bolton Wanderers' boy from Brazil, Andre Moritz, is playing the long game
WANDERERS have offered Andre Moritz a glimmer of hope as he looks to extend his contract at the Reebok.
The Brazilian playmaker raised major doubts over his future this week when he admitted he may need to move clubs to find the long-term deal he is looking for.
But speaking at his press conference yesterday, Dougie Freedman hinted the club could be willing to offer him the contract he desired, provided it was agreed at the right price.
Moritz had said he was looking for a “two, three or four-year” stay – and despite having an injury-plagued spell at Wanderers so far, his manager is optimistic a deal can be agreed.
“There is a huge possibility that could happen here,” he said. “I’m a massive admirer of Andre, and when the fans have seen him here, some of the goals he’s scored have been terrific.
“The problem has all been that he’s never quite been fit enough because he’s missed a pre-season.
“We’d definitely like to do something but there are a lot of players where contract is an issue right now.
“I can’t keep everyone on and realistically some of the contracts I am offering out might not be what the players want.
“If they want a home and settle down, then it’s up to them.”
Freedman put the playmaker’s fitness problems down to missing consecutive pre-seasons, apparently because he was busy trying to find a new club.
“When I got him on a free transfer at Palace, when nobody knew about him, and gave him the platform he showed certain glimpses of his quality. I think he’s done the same here, but unfortunately he’s not been as fit as he should have been,” Freedman said.
“He’s picking up these little injuries because of his lack of condition. We’ve played 38 games, and I would guess if he’s been fit for half of them he’s done fantastically well.
“I think he should settle down. I think he should sit down and sign a contract that allows him to know where his home is.”
Wanderers revealed earlier this week that Moritz has the fifth-highest goal-to-minutes-played ratio of any player in the division, with his seven strikes so far this term coming at one every 108 minutes.
But after three years of moving between Turkey, Crystal Palace and Bolton, Moritz admits he is looking to put down some roots.
“My next move, I want to be somewhere with maybe a three or four-year contract so I can go there and know that I will be there for a long time,” he said. “For me, coming to England was a gamble because nobody knew me before I came here.
“Now it’s been two years and I want to find somewhere, maybe here at Bolton or somewhere else, that I can stay for longer – two, three or four years.
“I will do the same kind of job that I have done for Bolton and at Palace, I just need to settle down at one football club and do my best.”