Owen Coyle, the Bolton manager, has urged his on-loan Chelsea striker Daniel Sturridge to keep his feet on the ground and finish the season with a bang.
The 21-year-old has been a revelation since moving to the Reebok Stadium in January and scored his seventh goal in nine games in Sunday's 2-1 victory over Arsenal. Sturridge was a thorn in the Gunners' side all afternoon and also won a penalty that would have put Bolton two goals ahead had captain Kevin Davies been able to convert it.
Sturridge's form has seen him linked with a senior England call-up and Coyle has no doubts he can follow in the footsteps of former Bolton loanee Jack Wilshere, now a key member of the Arsenal and England sides, provided he keeps the right attitude.
Coyle said: "How he's developed from being a young boy into a man is testimony to him, and Daniel can do the exact same thing. I've loved working with both of them.
"Whatever's going to come will come his way anyway but he has to make sure that he's concentrating on his job and continues his progress because we all know in football that if you don't then the rug gets pulled from under your feet.
"I've stressed to Daniel on a daily basis that every time he crosses that white line he has to keep showing people he's the real deal, which he is.
"He's been doing it to this point but we've got five big games between now and the end of the season and I want him to continue that development."
Coyle admitted when Sturridge arrived at the club that he was not expecting to be able to make the move permanent and that is a discussion he will leave for the end of the season.
He added: "We would love to have Daniel here but for that to come to fruition then a number of things need to happen. Obviously Chelsea would need to give their blessing and Daniel would need to want to come back and play the part that he has to this point. That will be for the summer."
Sunday's impressive victory ensured Bolton put behind them at the first opportunity their 5-0 thrashing by Stoke in the FA Cup semi-finals a week earlier. Tonight sees them back in action with a Premier League trip to Fulham, and Coyle insisted he had no doubts his players would respond in the right manner. "I didn't worry with this group of players," he said. "What happened, as hurtful as it was, it was a freak. We've played 41 games and there haven't been many of those where we haven't reached a certain standard.
"We had to try to bounce back quickly. We had six games at that point and we wanted to try to get as many points as we could to continue the progress we've made at the football club.
"We managed to do that on Sunday and now we move on to a very tough game at Fulham.
"They're a quality side," Coyle added, "they played ever so well at Wolves at the weekend, but it's another opportunity to get a win. We've won there in the cup this year and we have to try to do it again."Reuse content