Bolton boss Ian Evatt says he has signed ‘the complete midfielder’ after landing Tom White on a season-long loan deal from Rovers.

Evatt and White will reunite after spending the majority of last season together at Barrow where the 23-year-old played 18 times as they secured promotion from the National League.

Bolton, relegated to League Two last season, parted ways with former Rover Keith Hill earlier in the summer and quickly-moved for top target Evatt who is now re-shaping his squad ahead of the 2020/21 campaign.

The move will be a first taste of EFL football for the 23-year-old midfielder who spent four years with Gateshead having previously completed his apprenticeship at Carlisle United.

Barrow had been keen to sign him last summer, only for Rovers to step in, and he made eight appearances for the Under-23s, including a hat-trick of assists in a Premier League 2 win over Brighton in September, prior to his loan move to the Cumbrians.

Then Evatt finally got his man on loan last November, and has again ahead of the new season, with White having 12 months left to run on his deal at Ewood Park.

With no previous EFL experience, Evatt admits White will likely be an unknown quantity to the club’s supporters, but believes in his ability, and the way he fits in to his preferred way of playing.

He said: “While Tom might not be a name known to our fans, I know him very well as I had him last year at Barrow. He is the complete midfield player who can run, pass, dribble and break up play.

“He is a great acquisition to our squad.”

Barrow and Evatt had agreed that their former boss couldn’t sign any permanent players as part of the deal that took him to the University of Bolton Stadium, but with White having only been on loan, he’s swooped to land his man.

Evatt signed three players on loan from Rovers last season, with central defender Matty Platt a potential target for Wanderers, while Jack Vale also spent time at Holker Street.

Rovers have forged strong links with Barrow in recent years, with a number of loan deals having been agreed, while the two sides have met in friendlies in two of the last three summers.

Those links will only grow stronger after the appointment of David Dunn as Evatt's replacement at Holker Street.

Having spent time working with Rovers Under-23s, Dunn could well move for other Rovers youngsters who could be primed for loan moves ahead of the upcoming season, and had indicated earlier this month that Platt and White may have been on his radar.

White has represented England C on two occasions, earning caps against Wales and Estonia and could well take the central midfield birth at Bolton vacated by former Rover Jason Lowe.

Lowe, who came through Rovers’ Academy to make 196 first-team appearances, spent two years at Wanderers but has since moved on to pastures new, landing a deal with League Two side Salford.

Speaking about his move to Bolton, White says he was happy to get it over the line after several weeks of discussions.

I’m absolutely delighted to have joined the club. It’s been in the offing for a while but there was only one place I wanted to come this summer and I’m buzzing it’s finally done,” he said.

“I’ve got a really good relationship with the gaffer.

“His record last year speaks for itself and it’s an honour that he’s asked me to come here with him because I know how good of a manager he is.”

White’s move represents the first piece of summer transfer business conducted at Ewood Park, either in or out, after the window opened on Monday.