Chairman Ken Anderson addresses the club's supporters on bwfc.co.uk
Following our win over Fleetwood on Saturday, there has certainly been a huge lift around the club after a few disappointing results in recent weeks and that was ultimately down to a combined effort, both on and off the pitch.
The players put in an incredible performance on the field and played a team who have recently enjoyed an 18-game unbeaten run off the park.
Our supporters, who once again attended in their numbers, were the twelfth man at the weekend and throughout the game, your backing made the world of difference to help pull the team over the line.
We were also hugely pleased that Mark Beevers and Josh Vela managed to avoid their tenth bookings of the season, with the prospect of a ban for reaching the mark now abolished as we head into the final stretch of the season.
The game itself meanwhile saw the introduction of two faces, one new and one more familiar to the club’s supporters.
We were delighted to be able to add Jem Karacan to our ranks after intensive and extended discussions with EFL and I wholly appreciate the help and understanding they have shown us – and myself personally - in respect of our extensive injury problems this season.
There was also a huge lift all around with our captain Darren Pratley returning from his recent injury lay-off earlier than expected.
It was very much a surprise for all of us and on the manager’s part, it was a very last minute decision to include him. Phil’s decision the do so however undoubtedly reaped dividends as Darren put in a true captain’s performance, despite not having played a competitive game for the best part of seven months.
That is the kind of player Darren is – he is determined and his huge personality and leadership qualities could be seen by everybody inside the ground on Saturday afternoon.
Looking ahead to our next game at Gillingham, which will then be quickly followed by a home game against Northampton Town, it is imperative that the team remains focused on the job in hand and I believe that with the quality of the squad we have and players coming back from injury and suspension, we will be in good position to kick on and hopefully achieve automatic promotion.
It's important that we only focus on the next match that we have however and do not get too carried away, but the manager and the players know that they must be at their best for each and every match until the end of the season.
I also commented recently that we have done well to be there or thereabouts, considering the number of long term injuries we have had, but all that will count for nothing unless we can maintain the intensity and commitment that we showed in games against the likes of Fleetwood, Scunthorpe, Bradford and Crystal Palace as well as ones where we had our backs to the wall but dug in and ground out results.
On our day, we have shown that we are a match for anyone and we will all remember those goals against Port Vale, Gillingham, Walsall and now Fleetwood who were in a superb vein of form prior to the weekend.
That said however, we must work on the basis that our season starts now and over the next seven weeks, the players must perform to the best of their abilities to ensure we complete the job we started against Sheffield United back in August.
Games are coming thick and fast now and it seems unbelievable that going to Fleetwood on Saturday, we were contemplating having 12 games left to secure automatic promotion, but in just under two weeks from now it will be down to just seven.
That is where the incredible support you have all shown all season long becomes even more crucial to the cause, so please continue to come along in great numbers to as many of our home and away games as you can.
Our Community Fiver offer for our upcoming home game against Chesterfield is still ongoing as well with tickets for that game costing £5 across the board in a bid to make Macron Stadium a cauldron of noise.
I hope to see as many of you there as possible, while tickets can be bought at Bolton Central or online by CLICKING HERE.
Saturday was another fine example of how you lift and encourage the team, particularly when we are under pressure, and you well and truly made the difference on the day as you have done many times this season.
Let’s be loud, let’s be proud and let’s get behind the team in this final stretch.