PHIL Parkinson admits the shock decision to reduce Wanderers’ salary cap under embargo this summer had a major impact on his recruitment.

Told by the EFL in July the maximum wage he could offer new signings had been reduced to just £4,500 per week, the Whites boss found the pool of players he could sign evaporate without warning.

Parkinson had to change his plans quickly but insists the group he eventually assembled is still more than capable of retaining Championship status.

Wanderers face a Middlesbrough side at the Macron this afternoon with a net spend of more than £30million in the last window. And Parkinson admits to feeling a touch of envy when he sees the money which has been splashed around in the last few months by his rivals.

“It has been difficult, there’s no hiding away from the fact it has had a profound effect,” he told The Bolton News. “In the year every club in the Championship has gone haywire we have not been able to spend a penny.

“The restriction on the wages is something which has hampered us as much as anything. Players at this level command good wages and the better ones are those who have been in the Premier League.”

Wanderers had planned a sensible wage budget for this season and had been able to offer up to £6,000 per week in League One. The reason for the sudden rule changes, which apply only to clubs in embargo, are still somewhat of a mystery.

“Someone said to me the £4,500 figure was the average wage in the Championship. But I think you can work that one for yourself,” Parkinson said. “I knew absolutely nothing about it until a manager’s meeting and subsequently the rules were changed, just like that. There was no build up, we just got an email.”

Parkinson has still been able to add 12 players to his squad over the window, including Cardiff’s Craig Noone, who could make his debut against Boro today.

“We have looked at the first five games of the season and I know those players can improve,” he said.