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Bolton close in on Coyle

Bolton WANDERERS are set to step up their bid for Owen Coyle today by making an official approach to speak to Burnley about their former player.

According to local reports, Trotters chief executive Phil Gartside is keen to have Coyle in place before next weekend's Premier League trip to Sunderland.

After a week of mounting speculation Gartside appears ready to pounce for a manager whom he recommended for the Burnley job two years ago.

Bolton have refused to comment on speculation regarding a successor to Gary Megson, although betting has now been suspended by some bookmakers on the appointment of Coyle.

The Clarets have also kept a low profile with Coyle skipping the routine post-match press conference after Saturday's FA Cup third round win at MK Dons, although last night they insisted no official approach had yet been made for their manager.

Coyle's assistant Sandy Stewart said the ex-Republic of Ireland man was catching a plane to Scotland, but his non-appearance did nothing to dampen speculation about his Turf Moor future.

Coyle took over at Burnley two years ago and led them back into the top-flight for the first time in 33 years, earning praise for the style of football he imposed.