IT has not taken Pawel Olkowski long to get motoring in English football, and little wonder.

With 13 international caps for Poland and 65 Bundesliga appearances under his belt, the 28-year-old did not exactly turn up at Wanderers wet behind the ears.

But while his name may have been unfamiliar to all but the most eager European football watcher his pedigree has been quick to manifest itself around the club.

The defender passed his debut outing against West Brom last weekend with flying colours and is now looking to do another number on one of last season’s brightest attacking sides, Bristol City.

Phil Parkinson has no doubt the former FC Koln star has the tools to do well in the Championship, as he showed against one of the division’s bright young things at The Hawthorns last weekend.

“He’s up against Harvey Barnes, who’s a player I have tried to sign time and time again,” he told The Bolton News.

“I think he’s one of the best young players around. But Pawel was magnificent, there’s no doubt about it.

“He’s used to playing big games in the Bundesliga against some of the biggest teams in Europe, so I wasn’t worried about putting him straight in at West Brom or concerned that he couldn’t handle the situation. He was cool and calm as I thought he would be.”

Signing Olkowski was by no means a simple exercise. He had dropped out of favour in Cologne – a team who had lurched from Europa League qualification to the relegation zone in 12 short months – but had a queue of continental clubs waiting to take him on a free transfer once the club’s fate was sealed.

Parkinson got a recommendation and urged his scouting staff, Tim Breacker, Lee Anderson and Chris Johnson, to take a look at the video clips of him in action.

“We got together and looked at all the clips and the more we looked at him, the more we liked him,” the manager explained. “And when we got him over for the day to do a fitness assessment we really liked his character as well as his football ability. He had something about him that I liked right away.

“But we had to keep selling the club and worked really, really hard to get the deal done. Right up to the last day he had a Bundesliga 2 club offering him a lot of money to go there but he really wanted to play in England.

“In the end, after a couple of days of sitting there and wondering, it was agreed and I think, so far, it looks like a good bit of business.”

Olkowski arrived at Wanderers looking to get his career back on track after a difficult end to his time in Germany but already looks to have made himself at home, opening a Twitter account this week to help interact with the Bolton fans.

The defender has thus far shied away from mainstream media duties while he gets to grips with the English language but has certainly wasted no time getting his message across on the field.

Only Sammy Ameobi came off the pitch with a better pass success percentage against West Brom and team-mate David Wheater reckons Wanderers might have snapped up a real bargain.

“Pawel looks pretty good doesn’t he – I kept him working hard,” he said. “I think he got bored of me shouting at him after about 60 minutes. But he’ll learn.

“His first game was against Girona in pre-season and I said to someone at the time that he looks like a Rolls Royce when he plays. He looks a tremendous signing.”

Olkowski was not the only new signing to make a good impression on Wheater – with midfielder Jason Lowe also getting a rave review.

The former Blackburn Rovers and Birmingham City man has been almost ever-present in pre-season and is another one of Parkinson’s new boys to have hit the ground running.

“I told him he’s a dream to play behind,” Wheater said. “I don’t think he necessarily thinks the same about me – but he works hard left and right, listens to everything me and Mark Beevers say to him, so it’s fantastic.”

Parkinson echoed Wheater’s sentiments, and reckons the 26-year-old can be an important part of the midfield.

“He just quietly gets the job done,” said the manager. “We’ve given him lots of football over the summer and he looks in good shape.”