bolton wanderers

‘See what happens’ – Bolton Wanderers could land big boost as long-term absentee discusses return

Bolton Wanderers defender George Johnston is eager to return before the end of the season after suffering an ACL injury last summer.

Bolton Wanderers saw their pre-season start on bad footing when centre-back Johnston suffered a serious injury in a friendly against Bamber Bridge back in July.

The Scot suffered an ACL injury, seemingly ending his campaign before it had even started. It was a big blow too, as Johnston had become a key player over the 2022/23 season, his second full term as a Trotters player.

As is the case with ACL injuries, Johnston has been on a long road to recovery. Many would have expected him to return beyond the end of the current League One campaign, but the Bolton Wanderers man isn’t ruling out a comeback.

As quoted by The Bolton News, Johnston stressed that while he will have to wait and see what the situation is later in the campaign, he is aiming to be available for the final few games of the season. He said:

“It is kind of see what happens. I can’t play before the nine months, which is the beginning of April.

“Depending on the state of where we are at and the position we are in kind of decides whether I will play again this season.

“But in my mind, that is kind of the aim I have. That is the aim I have always had, to be able to play – or be available to play – the last few games of the season. That is what kept me going and that is what I will keep thinking and hoping for, because it is what is driving and pushing me.”

Johnston went on to say that if he can’t make a comeback before the campaign’s conclusion, his full focus will be on getting fit and strong for the start of pre-season.

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Who is this?

Fingers crossed

Only time will tell whether Johnston is deemed ready to return to not before the end of the campaign. One thing for sure is that having him available would be a big boost for Ian Evatt, even if his minutes are still limited.

However, those at Bolton Wanderers will be sure to lean on the side of caution. After such a long absence through a serious injury, the backroom team will be determined to avoid a re-injury or any setbacks for Johnston by looking to push him back too early.

It could depend on the position Wanderers find themselves in too, judging by Johnston’s words. There will be no point risking an early return if their position is already confirmed, though time will tell just where they find themselves come April.

They currently sit 2nd in the League One table, three points ahead of Barnsley in 4th having played a game more. Derby County and Peterborough United also remain in hot pursuit.

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