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Michael O'Halloran Thriving After Bolton Wanderers Struggles

Young Scot O'Halloran came with a large reputation, and left without it

Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

Scottish forward Michael O'Halloran joined Bolton Wanderers in 2008 from Celtic, venturing South for a fee reported to be in the region of £250,000.

However, his six-year spell at Bolton failed to yield a single first-team league appearance, and the player has been speaking to the Scottish Herald on the subject of his troubled time at Bolton Wanderers.

He said:

"I was originally at Celtic boys club but when Bolton came in for me I wanted to try it. I was only 16 at the time, I'd just left school, and it meant uprooting myself and going down there.

He continued:

"My six years at Bolton were tough, but they were also good for my maturity.

I was immature when I first went down but I was forced to handle everything that happened to me. I just wanted to try out England. The chance to go there and have a career in football was too good to resist.

I was ambitious - I still am - so who wouldn't want to try it?"

He then went on to confirm a lot of suspicions held about the club at the time - that youth development and progression had been placed on the back burner:

"I was a young kid just trying to work my way through the ranks at the club: from youths to reserves to first-team

"In the end it didn't work out, especially when Owen Coyle left as manager in 2012. He had been brilliant to me but, when Owen left, Bolton started going down a different road.

"It's hard to break into a team which is involved in a relegation scrap. In that situation managers don't blood youngsters. You just get forgotten about.

"It was a hard time for me. I was training all week and not getting a game. Basically, I was keeping myself fit for nothing. You get depressed and you can feel lonely. I just tried to keep my chin up because I think I've always believed in myself. You've got to stay confident.

To be a professional footballer, you have to believe in yourself."

Since leaving the North West, O'Halloran has scored ten goals in 41 appearances for St. Johnstone, whilst also making two appearances for the Scottish National Team back in 2012.