The versatile attacker has been out since October after suffering a hairline fracture of his kneecap and made his playing return as a substitute against Burton on New Year’s Day.
Buckley signed a short-term contract in August, which expires this month, and admits it has been a frustrating experience watching from the sidelines as Keith Hill’s side struggle for numbers.
Available again, and hoping to be up to full fitness by the time Wanderers next take the field against Rochdale on January 11, Buckley is determined to play catch-up if given the opportunity.
“When you look at the team and see how much they are struggling injury-wise, it felt horrible not being able to get back out there and help,” he told The Bolton News.
“I’m probably nowhere near match fitness at the moment but the manager wanted me back in there and it’s all I can do, be ready.
“When you are just not there it’s probably the worst thing you can do when you are not ready, you’d probably hinder your team. So I have had to be patient and wait until the manager knows I’m right.
“I’ve played plenty of games now but I know that fitness and sharpness has got to come quick now, because we’re running out of games to catch up.”
Buckley played two seasons in the Championship under Ken Anderson’s ownership, the latter being buried under the weight of financial issues and unpaid wages.
The former Brighton man says the relationship between the dressing room and the boardroom is now a completely different one.
“We can see with the new owners the direction they want the club to go in, and day-to-day they have been there to help us,” he said. “We haven’t had that for a few years.
“It gives you a bit of extra motivation because you are working for good people.
“It gives you that little bit more to push for someone who you feel is working for you too.”