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Football: SAM BETS ON BOBIC.

Byline: ALAN NIXON

BOLTON boss Sam Allardyce is taking a pounds 700,000 gamble on Fredi Bobic for the rest of the season - to save pounds 20 million.

The German striker is joining on loan for a club record pounds 35,000-a-week pay and could make his debut against Chelsea tomorrow.

But if the Borussia Dortmund striker keeps Bolton in the Premiership for another season it will be worth 30 times more than the cash-strapped club paid out for him.

Bobic, who flew into Manchester yesterday, will join full-time - probably on a free - if Bolton survive. They will gladly keep him on his huge wage in those circumstances.

Allardyce said: "Fredi's been involved in most of Borussia's games this season, so it's not as if he's been bombed out and isn't fit."

The deal means Bolton will not go ahead with a move for Peruvian striker Flavio Maestri or Benfica's Ukrainian international Sergei Kandaurov.

Bolton full-back Simon Charlton has signed a new three-year deal.

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BOBIC: Loan deal
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Jan 11, 2002
Words:169
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