PHIL Parkinson is backing teenage City striker Oliver McBurnie to show he has returned a better player from his loan stint at Chester.

McBurnie was rushed back from the Conference side as injury cover and goes straight into this afternoon's squad to face Walsall.

Parkinson is expected to send McBurnie out again for more experience once City's problems ease and Chester have made it clear they would like him back.

The Bantams boss believes the 18-year-old is reaping the benefits of playing regularly and learning the game with the "right club".

Parkinson said: "It's been long overdue to get Ollie out (on loan). We tried earlier in the season but because of certain circumstances we were unable to do it.

"Ollie was so useful to us coming off the bench at times, like the Leeds game. But we felt the timing was right to let him go to Chester and I'm really pleased with how he's done."

Chester were unbeaten in McBurnie's four starts and he also scored his first senior goal in a win at Welling.

"I've been speaking to (manager) Steve Burr a lot and we knew we were sending him to a good football team because I'd seen Chester play at Dartford myself," said Parkinson.

"We wanted to make sure it was the right team for Ollie and I was fortunate that just by coincidence I'd seen them and I thought they were excellent in that game.

"We've also had him watched by one of our own scouts Billy Dearden, who was an ex-centre forward himself. He's been monitoring Ollie and has been very pleased with him, which is great for us."

With James Hanson out of action and Jon Stead still a doubt, McBurnie's return will bolster City's attacking options and Parkinson hopes the youngster can grab his opportunity.

He said: "Ollie comes back into the frame. We've got the injury problems this weekend and who knows how long they will go on for.

"Chester haven't got a game next weekend anyway, so Ollie can stay with us for a couple of weeks. Then ideally I'd like him to go out.

"But who knows. Let's hope he gets in our team and makes a mark because we've always had a lot of faith in Ollie.

"The thing with Ollie is that he's got that physical presence. When we threw him in he was 17 and he played in some really tough games for us at the time when we were really depleted.

"You've got to remember he went straight from under-18 football into the first team. At any level, that is a very tough ask.

"We knew he wasn't physically ready and I was just concerned that might have knocked him a bit. But he's come back from Chester with a spring in his step.

"Now he's got to buckle down and work hard and wait for his chance."