SAM Ricketts does not want to be remembered as one of the players who took Wanderers out of the Premier League.

The Wales international recovered from long-term injury at the start of 2012 to prove one of the most consistent performers of last season – but ultimately, there was nothing he could do to prevent the Whites slipping out of the top flight for the first time in 11 years.

Now, Ricketts wants to put a silver lining on the relegation cloud.

Not content with promotion via the play-offs, which he achieved with Hull City in 2008, the full-back has set his sights on the top prize.

Speaking exclusively to The Bolton News, Ricketts reckons Owen Coyle’s squad should have extra motivation to lift silverware.

“Bolton have been in the Premier League for 11 seasons but you know people look back at the team who got them to that level and remember those players very fondly,” he said.

“That should be our aim. Getting relegated hurt everyone but it has happened and now we need a positive outlook. It’s not worth dwelling on last season.

“A few of the lads have gone up via the play-offs but personally speaking, I haven’t won a title. That would be something I think we could achieve if we kept this squad together.”

Even though Coyle released a large number of out-of-contract players in the summer, slashing the wage bill by about 45 per cent, Ricketts is pleased to see the key components have been retained.

The addition of Keith Andrews and Matt Mills have added more experience to the mix but the defender reckons the core of the squad deserves a chance to put things right.

“In essence, we have got a young squad that is still progressing and, even though I felt we were unlucky with certain things last season, there were things we could have done better,” he said.

“But I don’t think there are deep-lying problems at the club, or sweeping changes needed.

“I’m sure, like me, the rest of the lads want to get back to the Premier League as soon as possible because we all want to play there. So we need to use this season as a springboard and push on.”

Ricketts played two seasons in the Championship with Hull City, culminating in a memorable 1-0 Wembley win over Bristol City.

And he warned that the physical demands of the league will test Coyle’s squad to its fullest.

“Games generally come two a week, thick and fast, so it’s very important we get into a rhythm as quickly as possible,” he said.

“There is a chance for players who may not have played as big a part as they wanted to last season to go out and prove a point.

“There are quite a few teams who have been in the Premier League and got caught here – Leeds United, Middlesbrough, Nottingham Forest.

“So this first season is your big chance. We need to adapt quickly and take it.”