Vela Keen To Impress

Teen star Vela hungry to carry on where he left off last season and force his way into manager Owen Coyle's plans

If Josh Vela's 45 minute cameo against Ayr United is anything to go by, the midfielder could be set to play a starring role in Wanderers' promotion push this season.

There has been a lot of excitement about Vela's progression to the first team after a number of senior outings in the latter part of last season.

The 18-year-old impressed in substitute appearances against Swansea City, Sunderland and Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League.

Competition is fierce in the central areas with Keith Andrews, Darren Pratley and Mark Davies also all vying for berths.

Stuart Holden continues to make good progress in his recovery from a knee injury, while manager Owen Coyle is also taking a look at free agent Kalifa Cisse who has been with Reading and Bristol City in recent years.

"This is a big season for me now," acknowledged starlet Vela.

"I got a few minutes against Swansea City for my debut, which was great. But I got 25 minutes at Sunderland, there were a few nerves. I just wanted to get on the ball and show what I can do.

"There is a lot of competition this season but I want to get in the team. If I didn't get the chances then maybe I'd go out on loan, but it's all about games.

"It was all about getting into the first team and now I've finally done that. Now I want to push on.

"The gaffer has been fantastic. He gave me my chance, even though it came because of a few injuries, but they are the ones you've got to take."

Vela could be offered another opportunity to impress in Bolton's second pre-season fixture against Hamilton Academical on Saturday afternoon.

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