Evatt on Chorley outing: 'It's the first time I have had to get pretty serious'

·3-min read
Evatt on Chorley outing: 'It's the first time I have had to get pretty serious'
Evatt on Chorley outing: 'It's the first time I have had to get pretty serious'

IAN Evatt had to get “serious” with his Wanderers for the first time in pre-season – but says they are still making remarkable progress.

Saturday’s win at Chorley was not without its downside, as Bolton laboured at times in possession during the second half and struggled to break down their non-league hosts on a slow pitch.

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But while Evatt had some urgent notes to make to his squad after the final whistle, gathering them in the centre of the pitch before they had even had chance to leave, he says there has been a lot more to praise them for over the last few weeks.

“I thought first half the way we played was absolutely outstanding on this surface,” he said. “I thought there was loads of positives and second half, it becomes more challenging when they are sat there and they have worked so hard yesterday and it’s tired, it’s hot, the game’s already over and then you just become a bit sloppy with your standards.

“We’re having to drive those standards and I want to see more from them driving standards.

“Overall, I’m pleased that we’ve got out of here in one piece, that’s the most important thing.”

Evatt admits there was some physical fatigue on display after a hard couple of weeks on the training ground.

“The buy in that we’re getting from the players is to make them understand that in some games, it’s not going to be all perfect and we’re not going to play through people and go and score wonderful and beautiful football goals,” he said.

“Sometimes it’s our out of possession work that can win you football games. A high press and winning the ball high up the pitch, like we did against Longridge, creating chances and sometimes we’ll become more dangerous when the opposition have got the ball, especially against teams that want to sit off.

“That’s all the hard work that we are doing at the moment and we are seeing the benefits of that. It is the first time I have had to get pretty serious with them this afternoon because I feel like, especially second half, our standards slipped a little bit, but I do understand that we’re tired.

"We have worked immensely hard for two weeks but now we just need to make sure that we’re resting up tomorrow and we’re ready to go again on Monday morning because now the challenges start to increase with better level of football and better opposition.”

Wanderers were able to bring back MJ Williams after a minor knee injury and will soon have more players returning to the first team fold.

“Players are returning all the time,” Evatt said. “Josh Sheehan’s getting closer and closer now so they’re all in one piece which with the volume and level of work we’ve been doing, that’s probably the best result out of everything. But we know we’ve got loads more challenges to come.”

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