Ricardo Gardner has decided to remain at Bolton after rejecting the chance to move to West Ham on a free transfer, according to the player’s representative.
Gardner had appeared set to make the switch to Upton Park, where he would have been reunited with former Trotters boss Sam Allardyce.
His agent, Phil Graham, admits he did consider joining the Hammers but ultimately felt that he would be better off staying in the Premier League with Bolton.
The 32-year-old appeared on the Premier League’s list of released players published on Thursday as his contract at the Reebok Stadium had expired.
But the Jamaican is now expected to agree a short-term deal offered to him by Wanderers.
“It was very tempting for Ricardo to go and play for Sam, as a former manager, and one he enjoyed a lot of success with,” Graham told the Bolton News.
“But he didn’t particularly want to relocate, and his family certainly didn’t want to relocate.
“He loves the club and the town, and wants to see his career out at Bolton, and more importantly in the Premier League.”
BOYZ STEADFAST IN BID TO CREATE GOLD CUP HISTORY
Williams in doubt after knee injury IAN BURNETT @ THE CONCACAF GOLD CUP in the USA
VIRGINIA, USA – Uncertainty surrounds the continued participation of Jamaican defender Dicoy Williams, who injured his right knee against Guatemala last Friday at the FIU Stadium in Miami.
The 24-year-old Toronto FC player injured his right knee inside the first 10 minutes of the Reggae Boyz’s second Group B game against the Central Americans when he attempted to make a clearance inside his 18-yard box. The Boyz eventually won the game 2-0, but lost the player via substitution.
Williams was diagnosed with a strained right knee ligament and was expected to return to action in a few days after the swelling on the outside of the leg subsided.
He has not been able to train since, and instead of getting better, he has complained about pain returning to the area, which forced the team management to schedule an MRI at a local hospital last night.
Meanwhile, the Boyz held their first training session at the Trinity College in North West Washington DC yesterday afternoon in preparation of Sunday’s quarter-final fixture against hosts the USA at the RFK Stadium at 3:00 pm (2:00 pm Jamaica time).
Jamaica have never beaten the US at the senior level, but the entire delegation appears steadfast in its quest to create a bit of history in the nation’s capital on Sunday.
Along with Williams, first-choice goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts also missed the training session yesterday after complaining of slight pain in his knee.
The Boyz spent nearly two hours at the lush, green facility, watched by a number of Jamaican residents from the area, including at least two former national players.
Head coach Theodore Whitmore led the team through the technical drills, before his assistant Alfredo Montesso took control of the tactical session which followed.
The team had arrived at its Key Bridge Marriot Hotel here in Virginia at about 8:00 pm on Wednesday, after a six-hour bus ride from New Jersey.
The journey should have been completed much quicker, but the team bus was delayed badly on the New Jersey Turnpike by afternoon traffic.
Still, the team managed a training session at the St Peter’s College in New Jersey in the morning.
Dicoy Williams, Jason Morrison and Dane Richards were absent from that session. Morrison did not train because of a slight niggle, but Richards did not make the 20-minute trip to the training venue after he failed to make the 8:30 am departure time, which was insisted upon by Whitmore, a clear indication that he remains focused and business-like on the task at hand.
The Boyz had been given the night off on Monday after their third consecutive victory in the first round at the Red Bull Arena. However, they regrouped quickly the following evening with a recovery session in the swimming pool, and since then it has been business as usual.
REGGAE BOYZ ON A HIGH AHEAD OF US CLASH
Audley Boyd, Assistant Editor – Sport
VIRGINIA, United States: JAMAICA’S coaching staff had to, in horse racing parlance, rein in the Reggae Boyz to temper their enthusiasm, as they went through their first full training session yesterday, at Trinity College in Washington, DC, since arriving in the United States capital.
The Jamaicans got to Washington, DC late Wednesday evening, travelling over five and half hours by bus from New Jersey, where they wrapped up their CONCACAF Gold Cup preliminary fixtures with a 1-0 win over Honduras.
That victory ensured the Boyz a clean sweep of their first-round fixtures for the first time at this tournament and they are now in Washington preparing for Sunday’s quarter-final showdown against the United States, at the RFK Stadium, beginning at 3 p.m. (2 p.m. Jamaica time).
“The response was good,” noted Alfredo Montesso, the Brazilian who works alongside head coach Theodore Whitmore to condition the team.
take our time
“We had to control the excitement of the players at the training today. They were putting everything in it, this is good,” he noted. “But from the other side, we’ve to settle down a little bit, let them know that the game is coming on Sunday and we’ve to take our time, take more mental energy to understand what we have to do, how to move the team like we had them moving with ball possession.
“These are the things that we’re trying to emphasise every training session,” Montesso added.
On a couple of occasions during the session – which was watched by a fairly large group of Jamaicans – a halt was brought to proceedings when Jason Morrison and fellow central midfielder Richard Edwards clashed heads while going for the ball, and later when striker Luton Shelton was put on the turf by a hard, but clean challenge by Omar Daley.
Following the latter, Montesso grouped the players for a chat, after which they resumed their preparation in high spirits and without any heart-stopping moment, putting together some nice offensive combinations that were finished with goals or generally decent attempts.
Two regular starting players – central defender Dicoy Williams and goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts – sat out the session. Williams, who got hurt early in the team’s 2-0 win over Guatemala in Miami, is a concern to the coaching staff, while Ricketts was sidelined for precautionary reasons.
“Dicoy worries us a little more,” Montesso revealed. “Dicoy is still feeling pain from the injury that he got. He was getting treatment and there was some improvement a little, but it looks like that went back (got worse), so he’s going for an MRI.”
He was taken to the hospital shortly after training late yesterday evening.
With regard to the goalie, Montesso said: “Ricketts’ (omission) was just to preserve him because he was feeling his knee a little bit, but he should be back in training tomorrow.”
The Jamaica team had trained on Wednesday morning in New Jersey, ahead of their journey Washington, DC. Montesso thinks they made a good call.
“We took the time to train yesterday before we left New Jersey because if we spent the time we did on the bus yesterday we couldn’t reach here in Washington and have any time to train,” he observed. “So we have one training session ahead of the US, that’s an advantage for us because the US didn’t get to train.”
he should be back in training tomorrow.”
U21 STRIKER, RANIQUE MUIR –
Kraze Rally To Defeat Academics Mendoza’s two assists lead 3-2 victory in Bradenton
BRADENTON, Fla. — The Central Florida Kraze rallied for a 3-2 victory against the IMG Bradenton Academics on Thursday evening as Johnny Mendoza recorded a pair of assists before Jabari Garibaldi scored the game-winning goal with 15 minutes to go.
Playing in their third game in seven days, which included a road trip to North Carolina for the U.S. Open Cup, the Kraze players not only faced a talented opponent but the extreme weather as well. early on, it looked as if another trip was going to be too much for the Kraze as they started sluggish and fell behind in the eighth minute as the Academics opened the scoring through Luis Calzadilla.
As play continued the Kraze began to get a little more rythem and were able to capitalize in the 20th minute when defender Sean Hart scored off a corner kick from midfielder Johnny Mendoza. But IMG would rebound and regain both the lead and momentum in the 26th minute as Martin Ontiveros was able to beat goalkeeper Keneil Baker for a 2-1 lead the Academics would carry to halftime.
The second half was a much different story as the Kraze (6-1-1/19 Points) came out with more urgency and they would tie the score in the 57th minute when Ryan Maloney scored off of a cross by Mendoza. Both sides then began to go to their benches for fresh legs were inserted into the match, but the Kraze appeared to benefit more from the changes as they were able to secure the ball create several chances on the Academics goal.
The Kraze would finally get the game-winning tally when Garibaldi received the ball 40 yards from goal and turned, beat several defenders, and cracked a shot into the Academics goal in the 75th minute. The Kraze would hold on to head home with a 3-2 victory and remain at the top of the PDL Southeast Division standings.
“The boy’s played so well today and I am very proud of their effort,” Kraze coach Joe Avallone said. “This was definitely a team win as everyone contributed which allowed us to come from behind and get three points against a solid team. The chemistry on this squad is fantastic as each player is working hard for their teammate. We have one more hurdle to get over in this long stretch on Saturday against Nashville, however I feel with a day of rest the team will be prepared and look to stay undefeated at home”.
Next up for the Central Florida Kraze is a June 18th match to take place at the Florida Citrus Bowl with a 3 p.m. kickoff as part of a doubleheader with USL PRO’s Orlando City, who face the Wilmington Hammerheads that evening at 7:30 p.m.
ON LOAN HVFC STRIKER, ANDRE FAGAN SCORES A DOUBLE AT SNLA, VIETNAMESE LEAGUE!
ANDRE “BULLET” FAGAN, continues his rich goalscoring form in Vietnam by scoring two more goals last weekend to add to his earlier midweek goal making it 3 in the week….taking his seasonal tally so far to nine goals.
Fellow Jamaican striker partner, Devon Hodges also scored a hat-trick to help SNLA win by 6-2 and stay at the top of the league which breaks for a week….Hodges now has six goals.