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Evatt: Keep Calm and Carry On

Boss backs players to turn the tide and bounce back from losing run

23 October 2021

Calmness and composure is the key for Ian Evatt and his team as Wanderers aim to steady the ship and start moving back up the League One table.

Evatt’s men have lost three games in a row for the first time since last September heading into Saturday afternoon’s visit of Gillingham.

But the Bolton boss is keeping things in perspective following a solid start to life at a new level.

And he won’t allow disappointing defeats to top-four sides Wigan and Plymouth inside the space of four days from last weekend to de-rail what he’s building at the University of Bolton Stadium.

“This time last year we were virtually bottom of League Two so we have to remember how far we’ve come,” said Evatt, who will be back in the dug-out after a one-match ban for the mid-week trip to Argyle.

“We are 11th in League One. We know there are expectations there and we want that expectation.

Ian Evatt watching.jpg

“We’re calm, we we’re composed, we have firm belief in what we do and we have to go and attack the game on Saturday and try to put an end to this bad mini-run.

“Football is an emotional game. One minute you can be the best thing since sliced bread and the next minute you’re the worst team in the league.

“It happens that way but we have to stay composed, calm and focused on the job. And we are.

“Stay calm, stay composed, keep your belief, stick to your beliefs and things will change. We’ve got too good of a team for it not too.”

Wanderers have seen skipper Antoni Sarcevic move on to Stockport County but will have key defender Ricardo Almeida Santos back from suspension and taking over the captain’s armband against the 19th-placed Gills.

Left-back Declan John may also return to increase Wanderers’ defensive options as they bid to secure a first clean sheet in nine games.

Ricardo Santos celebration.jpg

And Evatt is expecting a positive response with Wanderers still just four points outside the play-off spots.

“Sometimes a week in football is a long time. You can feel very sorry for yourselves,” added the Wanderers’ chief.

“All of a sudden people can think you’re a bad team but you don’t become a bad team overnight.

“We’ve done lots of things right for a long, long time and this is probably our first sticky run since January.

“The players are disappointed and they’re hurting and they should be. This club now – and it’s a mark of how far we’ve come – isn’t used to losing games on a regular basis any more.

“We just want to be put it behind us now and put it right. We’ll come out fighting on Saturday and hopefully put an end to this bad week.

“We’re not hitting the panic button. There’s certainly no need to. It’s been a bad four days.

“We understand that, we appreciate that but it’s now about how we respond and react.”

Watch the manager’s pre-match interview HERE


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