Barry Bannan relishing Blackburn derby clash

Midfielder speaks ahead of his first local derby for the club since joining on loan last month

With Wanderers set to make the short trip to Ewood Park on Wednesday evening to face neighbours Blackburn Rovers in the Sky Bet Championship, on-loan midfielder Barry Bannan is relishing his first taste of a local derby in a Bolton shirt.

Set to make his eighth appearance for the club since joining on loan from Crystal Palace back in February, the 25-year-old has settled into the first team since his arrival at Macron Stadium, missing just two minutes of competitive action so far.

And speaking to the club ahead of Wanderers’ clash with their local rivals in midweek, the Scotland international admitted that the game is one which cannot come quickly enough.

“It’s been a bit of a long week since our match against Reading last Tuesday - we had a disappointing result that night, but we’ve all been really looking forward to the derby against Blackburn,” he said.

“Having that break can sometimes be a blessing and a curse at the same time, but it’s allowed a lot of the players who have figured in a lot of games lately to recharge their batteries and also a few of the injured lads to get back up to speed and fitness.

“We feel fresh ahead of the game on Wednesday and hopefully the match will see us welcome back a couple of faces who have been missing in recent weeks who will be able to bring something extra to the team.

“That said though, it’s a game that we’re all looking forward to and hopefully we can pick up all three points on the night.”

Also touching upon his time at the club so far, Bannan confessed his delight following his decision to make the temporary switch to BL6.

“I’m just thoroughly enjoying my football at the minute,” the midfielder explained. “I’ve featured in all the games since I’ve arrived at the club and for me, it’s just great to be out there playing regularly again.

“The lads have all been fantastic with me so far – we have a great squad here and I’m enjoying working with the manager, so I’m excited for the rest of the season and what lies ahead.”

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