Bolton Wanderers goalkeeper Adam Bogdan has paid tribute to Ali Al-Habsi, his opposite number at Wigan Athletic, ahead of the two teams' relegation showdown at the Reebok Stadium.
The young shot-stopper would not even be in the squad on Saturday afternoon if Wanderers' manager Owen Coyle had decided to hold on to Wigan number one Al-Habsi, who made the short move from the Reebok to the DW Stadium in a transfer worth around £5 million last summer.
"Even last year, I think Ali was brilliant. Wigan stayed up last year and he was a big big part of it, and he didn't stop [performing well] this season either," said Bogdan, who was speaking to Bolton Wanderers podcast TheMenInWhite.com
"I am very very happy for him because he’s a very nice guy, and a very good goalkeeper. I hope he plays well."
The flame-haired custodian also revealed that he is not overly enamoured with Bolton's choice of goalkeeper shirts this season.
The Hungarian makes for a very colourful character out on the pitch, his ginger locks jarring with the bright orange and purple he is forced to wear on matchday.
When asked whether he would be caught wearing the garish colours away from the football field, he said:
"Definitely not. It’s not my decision. It’s something I have to wear but it’s not my favourite.
"I could say something worse than that!"
Bogdan may not be overly impressed with his colour co-ordination, but he has shown enough playing quality to replace long-time Wanderers keeper Jussi Jaaskelainen, starting in the last six matches.
And it was Al-Habsi's departure that allowed him his chance.
"When he left he went on loan for a year and that opened the space for me. It meant the management trusted me I think, to let Ali go. It was very good for him, but very good for me as well. I think it was a win-win situation."
Listen to the full interview at www.themeninwhite.com
By David Limcomments