Newcastle-born Beardsley, a championship winner with Liverpool and capped over 50 times for England, is now in his mid-30s but the engine is still running as powerfully as ever. He covers vast tracts of the field yet he is not all huff and puff, he is about inspiration, drawing the best out of his team-mates and knowing exactly what to do when the going gets tough.
Beardsley is the sort of player who creates as many goals as he scores and his speed of thought and ability to find space mark him out as a very special player indeed. Beardsley started his career with Carlisle after being spotted playing for the famous Wallsend Boys' Club and inspite of 100 appearances he decided to chance his arm with the Vancouver White Caps, bought by them for £275,000. He made enough of an impact for word to get back to Manchester United who brought him home for £300,000 in 1982 but he made just one Football league Cup appearance for them before a first spell at Newcastle
For their outlay of £150,000 Newcastle had over 150 games from Beardsley as he finally made his mark and four years later - in July 1987 Liverpool paid £1,900,000 and he spent four glorious winning seasons at Anfield before making the short trip across Liverpool to Everton in 1991 - signed for £1m. Inspite of his age, Newcastle United manager Kevin Keegan regarded Beardsley as such a prized capture that he was willing to part with £1,500,000 to bring him back to St James' Park. Another tremedous spell with the club of his birth saw him link up effortlessly with Les Ferdinand but with the introduction of Alan Shearer and subsequent resignation of Kevin Keegan the 1996/97 season failed to see Peter first on the team-sheet as he had been for so long.
New manager Kenny Dalglish's recent signings had seen Beardsley consigned to a spell on the substitute's bench and it was at this point that Wanderers' boss Colin Todd chose to follow up with his initial inquiry for the player at the end of the 1996/97 season with a firm offer. Although not keen last season Beardsley himself must still feel he has a lot to offer a Premiership club and accepted second time around, only for Kenny Dalglish to block the move when Alan Shearer incurred a freak accident in pre-season and Les Ferdinand was sold simultaneously to Spurs.
Following much fury from the Bolton side of the arrangement, Todd has finally got his man, splashing out £450,000 on a player who will be 37 years old mid-way through his first season at the Reebok stadium. Despite Todds beliefs in the former international, Beardsley soon found his place to be more often on the subs. bench than on the field. For a player who is facing 40 soon, this is was not a good sign, and when Frank Clark wanted him on loan to help struggeling City away from the bottom of division 1, Peter was happy to help.