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cult hero

35-year-old Julio Baptista close to joining Championship club on a free

The former Brazil international is set to sign for bottom-of-the-table Bolton

The Beast is back.

Bolton have called upon the services of 35-year-old Brazilian forward Julio Baptista.

The former Real Madrid and Roma forward was last seen in England as part of his country’s senior team in TV tournament the Star Sixes.


The Brazilian failed to find his feet during his spell at Highbury for the Gunners

Times Newspapers Ltd
Bolton Wanderers are chasing Arsenal flop Julio Baptista

Baptista spent a loan spell in England with Arsenal in 2006/07 and, a four-goal haul against Liverpool aside, he struggled to make a significant impact.

But now Baptista will sign for Bolton as a free agent and try to help out Phil Parkinson’s winless strugglers.

The veteran of 47 Brazil caps arrived at the club hotel after weeks of haggling with chairman Ken Anderson about a possible deal.

Wanderers have been working under a transfer embargo but hope they get the nod to use Baptista from the Football League.

Parkinson has been hoping to bolster his side’s front line following their promotion to the Championship.

Baptista first signed for Real Madrid in 2005 for a fee of £16.9m

Baptista signed for Real Madrid in 2005 for a fee of £16.9m

Baptista told Sky Sports last month that he was keen to continue playing after being released from MLS outfit Orlando City last November.

He said:”I’m not finished yet.

“My agent is looking for a team so I can keep playing a little bit longer.

“Let’s see what happens. Maybe it will be Spain.

“Maybe it will be China. We will have to wait and see.”

Somebody should tell him fairly soon that Bolton is rather different than Sao Paulo, Madrid, London and Roma.

Not better or worse, just… different.

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