Bolton's 'mentality' praised by Luton chief after Man City switch

Hatters' on-loan Manchester City youngster Luke Bolton
Hatters' on-loan Manchester City youngster Luke Bolton

Town chief Graeme Jones has praised on-loan Manchester City youngster Luke Bolton for taking his opportunity after being thrust into the first team recently.

The 19-year-old made his debut for the Hatters in their Carabao Cup win over Ipswich Town, playing at right back for the first time in a competitive first team fixture.

He only lasted 45 minutes due to a knock picked up in the opening period, but then with Martin Cranie, Dan Potts and Brendan Galloway all nursing injuries, Bolton came for the trip to Barnsley, as Luton picked up their first Championship win of he season.

Although it had been thought he would bolster Town’s attacking ranks when joining from City on deadline day last month, having been used on the wing in a loan spell at Wycombe last term, Jones always had a more defensive role in mind for the teenager.

He said: “That’s why we signed him (to play right back), as Man City see him there long term.

“I’d watched some of his games for Wycombe, spoke to Gareth Ainsworth, and you’re in a position where you lose Martin Cranie at Sheffield Wednesday, you’ve got no Dan Potts, we’re going to Barnsley and you’ve got Brendan Galloway climbing off the treatment table to try and give you something.

"We were down to two choices really, James Bree who was left back, who had played there and Luke Bolton.

"So it was a bit like, 'it’s up to you', whether you’re ready, and you take the opportunity and he certainly has.

“He’s done well, I think his mentality more than anything.

"He’s got the equipment, but his mentality as it’s a big thing that, being able to take your opportunity.

"You need to be mature, have some level of experience, be strong in your mind and he came in under a pressurised environment and he wasn’t fazed at all.

"He’s been really good, he’s still got lots to learn, I’m sure that’s why Man City put him out loan at us, but so far, I'm delighted with him."

Bolton himself, who played twice for the England U20s this week, is certainly enjoying life at Kenilworth Road, after a difficult spell with the Chairboys, where he made 10 appeearances, including the 3-0 defeat at Kenilworth Road.

When asked for his thoughts on playing at a higher level this time, Bolton said: “I prefer it, there’s a lot less long balls.

“When the long ball’s needed, it goes, which isn’t a problem, but League One is a bit direct and I played on the wing, so I wasn’t really getting much of the ball.

"I’m really enjoying playing in the Championship, it’s a top league.”