DETROIT, MI - JUNE 7: Tim Ream #15 of the United States battles for the ball with Simeon Jackson #17 of Canada during the 2011 Gold Cup at Ford Field on June 7, 2011 in Detroit, Michigan. The United States won the game 2-0. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Tim Ream is reportedly set to join Bolton on a £2.5million transfer from the New York Red Bulls.
The long-rumored deal that would send Tim Ream from the New York Red Bulls to the Bolton Wanderers appears to be close to finalized. Bolton officials are apparently confident a deal will get done and have raised their transfer offer to £2.5million (close to $4 million), according to The Bolton News.
The biggest hangup on the deal appears to be Ream's ability to gain a work permit. Ream has not come close to appearing in 75 percent of the United States national team's competitive matches over the past two years, but Bolton is apparently confident they can secure the permit on appeal.
Ream's addition to Bolton would essentially come in tandem with Gary Cahill's expected move to Chelsea. Ream would be expected to compete for starting minutes with David Wheater and Zat Knight, neither of whom have really distinguished themselves of late. At the very least, Ream should be able to see some first-team minutes as long as he performs well in training over the next month or so.
The situation Ream leaves in New York is not as clear. Rafael Marquez is expected to move back to defensive mid this year and Stephen Keel is the only other player on the roster who has seen minutes at center back. The Red Bulls have reportedly signed Markus Holgersson out of Sweden, but nothing has been officially announced yet.