Most Football League fans are helpless to do anything while watching their team. They can sing, chant and get behind their players as much as possible but ultimately they're innocent bystanders as they watch their heroes in action.

However, for Bolton Wanderers fan, boxer Amir Khan, that's not the case as he is in an enviable position of being able to do his bit to help the Trotters squad get in shape and ready for action.

Khan invested in building the Gloves Community Centre, a boxing gym he now owns in the Bolton area, and the Wanderers players are regular visitors.

He's hoping he can help them fight back as they look to gain promotion from the npower Championship at the first attempt following relegation last year.

"The Bolton team, including coaches and manager Owen Coyle, have all been down [to the gym]," he says. "Kevin Davies is always here.

"With those guys, they've come down to see me train with the kids. Sometimes I do some of my training over there with them.

"I like to work with the Bolton team on strength and conditioning and see how they do things and see what I learn from them and vice versa. We share ideas.

"Footballers work more on lower body and hips, which is where the power for a boxer comes from - it's good for me to know that. All of their fitness training, shuttle runs etc help to prepare to go 12 rounds in a fight."

Boxing and football share similar qualities. Hard work, focus, psychology, fitness and determination apply to both team and individual sports.

Khan, however, believes his footballing counterparts have it easy compared to his canvas peers.

"I'd have loved to have been a footballer because I think it's an easy sport," he admits.

"You've got 10 guys alongside you to help you out. It's nothing compared to boxing.

"Boxing is one of the toughest sports. You're on your own and if you make a mistake you're responsible and you have to deal with it.

"In football if you lose a game the whole team takes stick. I have to take the stick myself - not to mention the punches."

Khan started his career boxing in the lightweight division, where he held the Commonwealth, WBO Inter-Continental, and WBA International titles.

In 2004, in Athens, he became the youngest British Olympic boxing medalist, winning silver at the age of 17.

He is also one of the youngest British world champions ever, winning the WBA Light Welterweight title aged 22.

His impressive record reads 26 wins in 29 fights (18 by knock-out) and just three defeats. He is currently assessing his options as he looks to bounce back following a defeat to Danny Garcia in Las Vegas in July earlier this year.

For now, though, Khan and his fellow Bolton fans are dealing with the devastating blow of relegation from the top flight last season.

Khan's resilient nature finds him confident of a quick return for his side.

"Although Bolton got relegated, I know we'll come back and we'll come back stronger.

"I know we are one of the favourites to get back up into the Premier League but it is going to be tough. It's a wake up call for Bolton Wanderers."

Khan continues to support his team when he can. He celebrated his engagement to fiancee Faryal Makhdoom with family and friends at the Reebok Stadium and Khan even owns a box at the stadium.

However, he admits it's hard to be a regular with a career in sport and all of the responsibilities - commercial and community - that come with it.

"I've still got a box at the ground and when I'm back in England I try to go to all of the home matches.

"Unfortunately I haven't been to many so far this season because I was so busy with the Olympics, and various trips abroad since.

"I'm hoping I get the chance to go to a game before I fly out to LA for my next training camp."

Khan knows that whatever his next challenge is, he can count on a growing home support. And in that, he admits he has a growing fanbase in the football world.

"I have lots of celebrity fans, like Katie Price, Jay Sean who I know quite well. Then there's Rio Ferdinand, Wayne Rooney and Nani - I know all of the lads quite well.

"They've been to a few of my fights already. Even Cristiano Ronaldo came to the Barrera fight before he left Manchester United.

"Manchester City come down to the gym, too. They don't want to spar with me, they just want to see me train. Micah Richards does a bit of boxing and he's trained here."

Clearly Bolton's relegation won't figure highly among Khan's memorable moments as a fan. Instead, a random experience watching Liverpool stands out for the Boltonian.

"I went to the Champions League final in 2005 for the experience. I know a couple of the Liverpool players like Steven Gerrard.

"Liverpool were 3-0 down at half-time and they turned it into one of the best comebacks ever. I can say I was there.

"The Liverpool fans were chanting my name, though. I was thinking, 'shouldn't they be shouting the player's names?'. Everyone knows I am from Bolton and I am a big Bolton Wanderers fan. I felt quite awkward."

If Khan gets his way, Bolton will return to the top flight sooner rather than later, meaning he can justify watching Liverpool in action ... against his beloved Bolton.

A long spar beckons for the Trotters, but Khan fully expects them to go the distance.

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