Brendan Rodgers wants warm welcome for returning Darren Pratley

Darren Pratley (centre) celebrates Swansea's Premier League promotion last season
Pratley scored 10 goals from 28 starts for Swansea from midfield last season

Swansea City manager Brendan Rodgers says Darren Pratley deserves an appreciative welcome on his return to the Liberty Stadium on Saturday.

Pratley is set to face his former side for the first time since joining Bolton Wanderers on a free transfer in June.

"He did great for us last season so I hope he gets a good reception on Saturday because he gave everything in the shirt," said Rodgers.

"I wanted to keep Darren. He was an integral part of our success."

Pratley joined Bolton after helping Swansea secure promotion through the Championship play-offs.

He scored after coming on in their semi-final second-leg win over Nottingham Forest and played the last 35 minutes as a substitute in Swansea's play-off final win over Reading.

But the 26-year-old, who helped Swansea win two promotions in five years, aimed a parting shot at chairman Huw Jenkins for delaying talks over a new contract.

"I made it clear to him I didn't want him to go," insisted Rodgers. "My idea at the end of last season was to strengthen our group.

"He was obviously disappointed his contract wasn't sorted out, even before I arrived here [in 2010].

"But Darren's no different to any other player in that final year [of their contract]. Not too many people are going to commit because they normally wait and see what possibilities they have."

Pratley's career at Swansea was defined by his energy and scoring exploits from midfield.

He has failed to open his account for a struggling Bolton side, who are three places below Swansea, but Rodgers believes he has all the attributes to thrive in the Premier League.

"He's the type of player I love - someone who's passionate about the game, someone who lives their life for football," said the Northern Irishman, whose side has yet to concede at home this season.

"And when he plays, more times than not he produces. He's a good man, I'll always wish him the best.

"All the players that played their part last season, I want them to do well - but hopefully not against Swansea."

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