League Two top scorer Eoin Doyle is set to stay at fourth-tier level next season by leaving Swindon Town to sign for relegated Bolton Wanderers.
Doyle, whose 25 goals helped Swindon become League Two champions, had been offered a new contract by the Robins.
But boss Richie Wellens says the 32-year-old will instead join Bolton.
“The money Bolton are throwing around for a player of his age, and a three-year deal at that, we couldn’t get to that,” he told BBC Radio Wiltshire.
“I believe Doyley’s had a medical at Bolton, In fact, I’m surprised they’ve not released it yet.
“We’re moving up a level and it looks like a parting of the ways. And we wish him well. He’s been fantastic for this club. He’s done great for us, just as we’ve done great for him. He suited the way we played.
“But, when you get to Eoin’s age and a three-year deal is put in your lap, it’s very hard to turn down. The last time he played in League One, he got relegated.”
Doyle’s footballing data
Dublin-born Doyle played in Ireland for Shamrock Rovers and Sligo Rovers before crossing to Britain with Hibernian in 2011.
Since then, he has played for seven English league clubs – Chesterfield, Cardiff City, Preston North End, Portsmouth, Oldham Athletic, Bradford City and Swindon Town.
He still scored 11 times as Bradford got relegated from League One in 2018-19. But, after signing initially on loan last August, before signing on a more permanent basis in January, he more than doubled that this time, even in such a truncated season.
He finished way clear as top scorer in the division as his 25 goals came in just 34 games prior to the season lockdown in March, which makes him still the English Football League’s leading marksman.
Bolton, who began the campaign in danger of being wound up, finished bottom of League One when the season was finally ended in June, on a points-per-game basis.
They scored just 27 times in 34 league games this season – the second lowest total in the EFL. Only League Two backmarkers Stevenage (24) have scored less.