Wanderers have been dealt a huge boost with the news that Chung-Yong Lee could be back in action in the New Year.
It was originally thought that the winger, who suffered a horrific double fracture of his lower right leg in a July friendly with non-league Newport County, stood no chance of pulling on a Whites shirt this season.
But the player's representatives have told The Bolton News that the 23-year-old is healing well – and that he has set his sights on a playing return by the end of January.
Chung-Yong will return home later this month to be treated by national team doctor Song Joon Sup.
The youngster is currently based at his house in Bolton with his parents, but has been visited daily by Wanderers' medical staff and team-mates.
Kim Sung Tae, chief executive of TI Sports, who look after Chung-Yong's interests confirmed yesterday that news of his recovery was much more positive than had been previously thought.
“Now we're looking for, or hope for January or early February,” he said. “I hope he can help the team after then.
“He will do nothing in Korea except recovery. That is what he will concentrate on, so he can return to the UK in December or January.
“When he comes to Korea he will be walking on crutches, but when he goes back, he wants to throw them away before he gets on the plane.”
Chung-Yong has also revealed some of the secrets he intends to use to get him back to an early playing return.
His parents have brought back from Korea some concentrated safflower oil, a medical supplement that is known to help bruising, swelling and circulation. It is used sparingly in the UK, and interestingly is also one of the chief ingredients of soft drink Tizer.
And Mr Kim also confirmed that Chung-Yong was using his spare time to broaden his horizons, reading a series of Korean comic books about European culture and UK history.
One of his country's most prized exports, news of Chung-Yong's injury in pre-season made front page news and also an instant villain of the protagonist, Newport midfielder Tim Miller.
The 21-year-old did apologise to the Wanderers camp after the game but that didn't prevent hundreds of Korean football fans posting death threats to him via Facebook and Twitter in the proceeding weeks.
He has been promised state-of-the-art care on his return this month and will be treated in a smilar oxygen tent to the one that prepared Wayne Rooney for the 2006 World Cup in Germany.