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In profile: Eidur Gudjohnsen

5 December 2014

An in-depth look at Wanderers' latest recruit, Eidur Gudjohnsen

A man who needs no introduction to Bolton Wanderers supporters, Eidur Gudjohnsen re-joins the club following a successful trial, 14 years after his last appearance for the Whites.

Since leaving Macron Stadium to join Chelsea at the start of the 2000/01 season, the Iceland international has gone on to enjoy a glittering career across Europe, playing alongside some of the planet’s finest stars.

Now back where he was first thrown into the limelight, Gudjohnsen will be eager to recreate his past glories from yesteryear under the stewardship of Neil Lennon, having competed in the play-offs in both of his previous seasons with Bolton.

The 36-year-old started his career in his native Iceland with Reykjavik-based Valur, before joining Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven in 1995, where he lined up alongside Brazilian superstar Ronaldo. 

Injuries curtailed his progress with the Eredivisie club, however, despite this he was still handed an international debut against Estonia in April 1996, famously coming on in place of his father, Arnor.

Following a brief stint back in Iceland with KR Reykjavik, Colin Todd first brought Gudjohnsen to Bolton in 1998 after the young forward impressed on the Trotters’ summer tour of Ireland.

Handed a first team debut against Birmingham City in September 1998, Gudjohnsen would have to wait until the following March to firmly break into the Wanderers’ team.

However, back-to-back goals as a substitute against Swindon Town and Barnsley cemented his place in the Bolton side for the rest of the season as they challenged for promotion, only to lose in the Play-Off Final against Watford.

The Whites’ star-man during the 1999/00 season, Gudjohnsen finished the campaign with 21 goals as they once again reached the play-offs, as well as both the FA Cup and League Cup semi-finals. 

Having scored in the semi-final first leg against Ipswich Town, injury forced the forward to miss the second leg as Bolton were knocked out in his absence. It would be his last appearance for the club.

Signing for Chelsea in a £4m deal, Gudjohnsen’s time at Stamford Bridge immediately started with silverware as they beat Manchester United in the Charity Shield.

Forming a lethal partnership in attack with Jimmy-Floyd Hasselbaink, the forward helped Chelsea qualify for the Champions League in 2002/03, before surviving the arrivals of both Roman Abramovich and Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge.

A two-time Premier League winner under Mourinho, he also lifted the League Cup in 2005, before departing for pastures the following year, joining Champions League holders Barcelona.

Spending three years at the Nou Camp, the highlight of Gudjohnsen’s time in Spain came during his final year with the club as Barcelona won the treble – La Liga, Champions League and Copa del Rey.

Joining Monaco that summer, Gudjohnsen was on the move again six months later as he returned to England, joining Tottenham Hotspur on loan.

Brief spells with Stoke City, Fulham, AEK Athens, Cercle Brugge and Club Brugge followed, while Gudjohnsen was also a member of the Iceland side that fell agonisingly close to qualifying for the 2014 World Cup, losing in the play-offs to Croatia.

Now back at Macron Stadium on an initial deal until the end of the 2014/15 season, Gudjohnsen will be hoping to emulate some of his previous successes with the team where he began to forge his career all those years ago.

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