Former Bolton midfielder Josh Vela could make his Carlisle debut against the Whites this weekend.

Vela’s move from Fleetwood to Brunton Park was confirmed on Thursday evening as he looks to help the Cumbrians in their relegation battle.

The 30-year-old is expected to be in the squad against Ian Evatt’s side while Jack Diamond, another new addition, could also feature.

Ben Barclay and Terry Ablade could both return from knee and thigh injuries respectively but Josh Emmanuel remains sidelined.

Carlisle ran out 3-1 winners when the sides met at the Toughsheet Community Stadium in October after Jordan Gibson’s hat trick.

“We can take confidence from that,” said boss Paul Simpson. “And we can take confidence from our level of performance at Barnsley.

“We have had the usual apology from PGMOL that it wasn’t a penalty (for Barnsley’s winner) and the referee misjudged the level of contact.

“Unfortunately, that doesn’t change anything but we have to improve on that too. We had opportunities to put that game to bed, and if we get them and don’t take them against Bolton, we will probably get caught out again.

“We have an opportunity to get a win-double against someone at the top end of the table – that is something we have got to look to do.”

Carlisle had no midweek fixture and Simpson got a closer look at Wanderers during their 1-0 win against Cheltenham.

“I went to watch them on Tuesday and they had a really tough game against Cheltenham, who were so unlucky not to get something out of the game and Bolton probably scored against the run of play,” he continued.

“They are a side who are a very settled group of players. They have a few issues, I believe this weekend, with a few injuries and I am not sure if (Carlos Mendes Gomes) is back from AFCON yet and all those sorts of things.

“But you don't hold a place up at the top of the table if you have got a poor group of players. They are a really strong group of players.

“They are a strong football club and they have a magnificent stadium too, so we know it is going to be a challenge for us, a real tough test. But we have just got to concentrate on us.”