Bolton: Right back switch was inspired by Man City boss Pep Guardiola
A chat with Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola was all Luton loan signing Luke Bolton needed to know that a switch to right back was for him.
The 19-year-old came through the ranks at the Etihad, playing as a winger during his youth career.
However, after featuring for the first team against both Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund in pre-season a year ago, he soon changed his mind changed over where his future lay.
Bolton said: “I spoke to City and that’s where the manager sees me, so I was hoping that I’d get a run out at right back (with Luton), and I’m really enjoying it.
“I played there three times last pre-season with the first team, then Pep spoke to me and thought that’s where I was going to be best, so I just took that advice on board, that’s all I can do really, listen to him.
“He’s obviously a very smart man, I’d say the best coach in the world.
“He pulled me into his office, we’re speaking, he thanked me for pre-season and then said that’s where he thinks I’m going to be best.
“So straight away, I said, ‘no problem, that’s where I’ll play.’
“I’ll never argue and say ‘no, I think I’m a winger,’ I’ll take it on board from someone like that as he’s managed a lot of top players as well.”
On just why the former Barcelona boss felt a switch to full back would suit him, Bolton continued: "He said, with my pace, getting up and down the line, he just thinks I’m going to be more sorted to full back than as a winger.
“That’s all he really said, my physical attributes, he thinks I can turn into a good wing-back.”
Bolton has started the last two league games for Hatters at right back, also playing the second half of the 3-0 win at Cardiff in the Carabao Cup.
On the occasions he has been caught out defensively, his electrifying pace has been enough to cover, as Bolton admitted that and advice from Matty Pearson has helped him adapt to life at Kenilworth Road.
He said: “I’d rather not get caught out, the positioning, I’m still working on it, but I feel like I’m getting better every game.
“Having to use my pace to get myself out of it, if I do get done, I try to get back as quick as I can.
“Matty helps massively, always talking and I listen, even if it’s what I don’t want to hear, I’ll always listen to him as he’s very experienced.
“I do enjoy defending, I back myself one v one anyway, to show down the line, it’s just tucking round and stuff like that, but I’m learning and I’ll only get better.
"I’d rather have good position and head the ball, but if I need to use my pace, it is there.
"Graeme (Jones) tells me what he wants me to do but obviously on the pitch sometimes things change.
“I think it’s just speaking to the players, listening for instructions from Matty and Sonny (Bradley) and just taking it all on board.
“The only way you learn, especially at this level is just doing it, and having the pressure on brings out the best in you anyway, so I’m really enjoying learning as I’m playing.”