STOKE City have rejected an offer from Wanderers to take Thibaud Verlinden back on loan for the rest of the season.

The Belgian winger impressed in the first half of the season, making 17 appearances and scoring three goals.

He was called back at the start of the month by the Potters and has since made two sub appearances before picking up a minor injury.

Keith Hill enquired about bringing him back to the UniBol but has now been told by Stoke that he will not be loaned out again.

“We have asked – and no,” said the Bolton boss. “We have done our job and they were happy with the work he did for Bolton. We would love him back, he excites us as well as the supporters, he takes you high up the pitch and is a curse for the defenders. We have been on our knees praying but we have been told a firm ‘no’.”

Hill admits Wanderers have ended up being a victim of their own success with the youngster, who had been consigned to Stoke’s reserve team on his arrival back in August.

He scored on his debut against Rotherham and became a firm fans’ favourite – but the Bolton boss is taking some heart from the time he spent with the club.

“We would have loved him to return and it was always going to be the case, Thibaud has been a massive success for us and he goes back to Stoke because of that,” he said.

“Bolton Wanderers deserve a lot of credit for that. Stoke want him to stay, they are encouraged by his performances on the training pitches, he’s had a slight injury but they are determined to keep him.”