HITC Sport understands the Welsh club are hoping to land the talented youngster
The 22-year-old midfielder has come through the youth ranks at the Lancashire club and has made over 50 first-team appearances.
Aged 17, Liverpool tried to sign him and he has continued to attract interest from a number of Premier League and Championship clubs.
The likes of West Ham United, Leicester City, Burnley and Ipswich Town have all been following him closely but now Cardiff are hoping to win the race for his signature.
HITC Sport understands The Bluebirds have made an initial offer of around £500,000 and they are hoping that Bolton's precarious financial situation will see them accept.
However, whilst Cardiff want the deal doing quickly, Bolton are anticipating further bids for one of their prized assets and may hold out.
Cardiff are currently ninth in the Championship table heading into the busy Christmas and New Year period and with them just one point outside the play-off places there is still plenty of reasons for optimism heading into 2016.