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Aitor Karanka glad to see Jack Hobbs get career boost at Bolton

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse
Aitor Karanka claims doctors told him Jack Hobbs would not be able to play regular football again when he turned up at the City Ground.

The Forest boss is delighted to see Hobbs commanding a regular spot under Phil Parkinson at Wanderers.

A career-threatening back problem had severely limited the defender's game time in the East Midlands, leaving him facing an uncertain future. But after returning to the Forest line-up in the final few weeks of last season he has been able to make a fresh start at his new club.

Hobbs has started the last six games for Bolton, becoming one of Parkinson's most consistent defensive operatives.

Though Karanka released the 30-year-old centre-half from his contract at the end of last season, he has been pleased to see his career continue at Championship level.

“It was a really difficult decision and I am really pleased to see him playing now, because when I came here in January, the medical department told me that I could forget him because he wasn’t going to play,” Karanka told The Nottingham Post.

“For me, after training with him for three or four months, after knowing him as a person and as a professional, to see him playing every single game is really nice.

“After four months of knowing him as a person, he deserves it because he is a very good lad.

“He is a very good professional and he is a very good player.”

Wanderers stayed in the Championship with a thrilling 3-2 victory against Forest on the last day of last season and Karanka expects more fight from Parkinson’s team.

Forest lost against Norwich on home soil at the weekend, and the former Real Madrid assistant is calling for a response from his players.

“We played against them in the last game of last season, and we know how tough that game was at the time,” he said of the Bolton trip.

“That game was them fighting for their lives and, for sure, they will want to win every single game this season to not be in that position again.

“We need to recover our intensity. When we play with intensity, we have shown that we are able to beat teams like Middlesbrough and almost beat teams like West Brom – teams which are at the top of the table.”

Steve Parkin has been delighted with the way Hobbs has started his Bolton career.

"He's been great," said the assistant boss. "He admitted himself after Saturday's game he wasn't at his best, but in all the others he's been very, very good.

"He sets a terrific professional example around the building with the way he goes about his business and he has been a very successful signing for us already."

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