Joey O'Brien is hoping to kick-start his career with a loan move away from the Reebok Stadium after two injury-plagued years at Bolton.
The 24-year-old, who can play in defence or midfield, has not played since the goalless draw against Blackburn in October 2008.
Indeed, the most serious required him to have part of his kneecap removed.
O'Brien, though, is now finally fit and chomping at the bit for competitive action, even if it means going out on loan.
"I have spoken to the manger and it's an option - but it's whether a club wants me or not. We will have to wait and see," he told the Bolton Evening News.
"I have not been involved in the first team at the moment and have been playing reserve-team football, so it's a step up to be playing competitive football in the Championship.
"The last two years have been pretty grim, but if someone had told me a year ago I would have to go out on loan to play football, I would have snapped their hand off because it didn't look like I would ever play again.
"There have been some dark days. The first surgery wasn't a success and, after the second one, they weren't very optimistic about the outcome because I'd had a piece of my kneecap taken out.
"I have still got a long way to go, but the only way I'm going to get there is by playing games."