LUCA Connell’s future could be sorted by the time he returns from international duty.

The Wanderers midfielder, currently with the Republic of Ireland at a training camp in Portugal, is being chased by a string of Premier League and Championship clubs.

Connell has been signed to an extra year on his scholarship contract by Bolton – who were keen to strengthen their position in any potential tribunal – but that has not put off his ever-growing list of suitors.

Asked about his future, the 18-year-old, who could win his first caps in upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Denmark and Gibraltar, said: "I don't know, I'm leaving that down to my agent. Hopefully he's sorting that out while I'm away, seeing what's about and what he thinks is best for me."

Mick McCarthy drafted the midfielder into his week-long training camp in Quinta do Lago at the last minute despite not having seen him play in the flesh.

Connell explained that his dad, Andrew, had taken the call from the Ireland boss, sparking a quick change of plan.

"It was only Sunday night the gaffer rang my dad and said he'd be interested, had heard a lot about me, hadn't seen me live yet, but he's looking forward to seeing me, so I can't wait to get on the pitch.

"To be honest, I didn't know what to do. It's one of those ones, I was confused and it didn't really sink in until I was on the plane that I was actually coming over to meet the first-team squad."

Liverpool-born Connell played for Ireland’s Under-17s last summer and is understood to have been offered a chance to switch allegiances to England.

The youngster admitted it was "surreal" to walk into the team hotel to meet McCarthy, assistants Terry Connor and Robbie Keane and the rest of the players.

However, there was one man whose acquaintance he was particularly keen to make.

He said: "It's crazy, it's surreal to be honest, especially Seamus Coleman. Being from Liverpool and supporting Everton and supporting him through everything, it's brilliant for me.

"I spoke to Seamus last night, he welcomed me in. Being the skipper, that's part of his job as well, isn't it? But he's a lovely, lovely fella. I can't thank him enough for welcoming me in."

Connell is scheduled to be with the squad only for the week in Portugal - they face Denmark and Gibraltar in Euro 2020 qualifiers early next month - although McCarthy threw him down a challenge as he prepared to start work.

The manager said: "He knows he's coming in for the week in Portugal - unless he rips it up, of course and he's top man every day, who knows?"

Asked if he intended to rip it up, the midfielder replied with a smile: "I'm going to try my best."

The midfielder's elevation comes at the end of a breakthrough season at Bolton during which he made 15 senior appearances in difficult circumstances with the club battling, an ultimately failing, to secure Sky Bet Championship survival amid upheaval off the pitch.

He said: "It's been a tough season for the club, the players, the staff, the fans, tough all around. But it's been a good season for me personally. I've experience in the Championship and I'm grateful to the gaffer for giving me the chance."