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U.S. defender Tim Ream: staying at Bolton despite relegation

Britain Soccer Premier League

Bolton’s Tim Ream, centre, David Wheater, right, and Adam Bogdan react after a Tottenham goal during their English Premier League soccer match at The Reebok Stadium, Bolton, England, Wednesday, May 2, 2012. (AP Photo/Jon Super)


U.S. international Tim Ream has declared his allegiance to Bolton, despite last week’s devastating fall into England’s second tier.

Management at Bolton FC in England says revenue will fall by almost $40 million, which is bad news for keeping the bulk of the roster together.

Bolton finished among the bottom three in the final English Premier League standings, which means a drop in the second tier of soccer there, the Championship.

Veteran midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker has already announced his intention to move on, set to exercise the escape clause inserted into his contract for just such an event.

Bolton chairman Phil Gartside told BBC radio: “You’ve got to dust yourself off and get on with life. It’s not the end of the world - we’ve got a plan and we’ll implement that plan.”

For now, it looks like Ream is among the rebuilding blocks. Presumably, so too is recovering U.S. international midfielder Stuart Holden, who offered a similar, non-binding pledge last week to remain at the Reebok.

None of it means Ream or Holden will definitely be around Bolton by the summer; players may still be sold in the July transfer window as Bolton seeks to reduce payroll.

It’s a tricky situation. The drop in revenue means player budget must be slashed (which is why players like Ream and Holden face a tenuous situation). If the club can’t cut enough salary, debt rises dangerously – an issue about to become more complicated by new financial fair play rules. But cut too much and quality drops significantly, which degrades the opportunity to get back into the Premiership without too much financially destabilizing time spent in the second tier.