Owen Coyle says Josh Vela will definitely miss the weekend trip to Hull City, with the full extent of the midfielder’s injury set to be determined over the course of the next couple of days.
The 18-year-old made his first competitive start for Bolton on Tuesday evening, but he was forced from the field in the opening exchanges after colliding with Crawley midfielder Nicky Adams.
Coyle also confirmed that David Ngog isn’t yet fit enough to return to action following his time on the sidelines with a back injury, however the Bolton boss is more optimistic of Benik Afobe’s chances after the on-loan man was also withdrawn from the action against Crawley in the second half.
Coyle said: “Josh Vela came off within four minutes against Crawley so he will be assessed further today (Thursday), in terms of a scan.
“We looked at it initially yesterday but we had to wait until it settled down a bit. We will know more later today – hopefully it’s not long-term but he is certainly ruled out for Saturday.
“David Ngog managed to play 45 minutes in the reserves on Monday, which was good. Hopefully he will continue to train with us over Thursday and Friday and gradually get closer to where he needs to be.
“Young Benik Afobe came off with a knock on Tuesday and we are hopeful that he will be okay.”
After the Capital One Cup commitments, Wanderers return to Championship action at the KC Stadium looking to build on the four points registered from the back-to-back home fixtures last week.
Whilst acknowledging that Hull will provide stern opposition, Coyle believes that Bolton have every opportunity to extend their points total by another three on Saturday, given that they produce a solid defensive display.
Steve Bruce’s Hull side have made a similar start to the campaign to Wanderers having recorded a win, a draw and a defeat from their first three fixtures.
Coyle added: “We made seven or eight chances in midweek, but when you lose a game you want to go out and win the next one.
“What we have to do is make sure that we continue the level of performance that we have shown in the previous Championship matches against Derby County and Nottingham Forest.
“It should have resulted in six points as opposed to four, but they were certainly two far better performances than the first one at Burnley.
“You have to be consistent in this league. We know we are capable of scoring goals but what we have to do is make sure that we are not giving away easy goals.
“That might sound daft given the quality of Nottingham Forest’s finishes, but within every goal there are avoidable moments.
“We will score goals but we also have to keep the backdoor shut. If you do that, it’s a great remedy for winning matches.”