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Evatt: Battle Of The Boxes Proves Costly

Boss rues first goal but welcomes back Jones as Wanderers seek end to run

12 January 2022

Ian Evatt admitted Wanderers failed to box clever as they suffered an unhappy homecoming against promotion-chasing Wycombe.

A first home game in six weeks ended in a 2-0 defeat and a fourth successive League One loss.

But Wanderers had more than their fair share of a contest settled by goals either side of the break as the in-form Chair Boys moved to within a point of top spot.

“I think the difference was both boxes,” said Evatt.

“There wasn’t a great deal in the game apart from in both boxes and when you lose the battles in both boxes you need up losing football matches.

“We conceded two really poor goals and didn’t take our opportunities at the other end.

Dion Charles shot.jpg

“We look like we’re devoid of some confidence. The first goal would make all the difference. We didn’t get it and we had opportunities.”

The Wanderers’ boss added: “I thought we were on top in the first half and then the last team you want to concede a first goal against is Wycombe.

“They’re experienced, they managed the game really well and then we didn’t start the second half well at all.

“They got the second and we were climbing a mountain and against teams like Wycombe, who are experienced, have just come down from the Championship and are at the top end of this division, it’s hard to get yourself back in the game.

“But we have to keep going. It’s not going to get any easier.

“We’ve got Ipswich coming up and Shrewsbury away, which are tough games.

“We’ve got bodies coming in and bodies getting fitter all the time but, for now, we have to keep going, roll up our sleeves and find a way to get a result.”

Jones Darcy.jpg

Wanderers slipped a place to 18th in the table but did take some positives as new arrivals Dion Charles and Marlon Fossey both showed they will be assets in the fight to reverse current form.

And while winger Elias Kachunga is facing a couple of months out with a thigh injury and loan man Xav Amaechi is not expected to return from a hamstring problem by the weekend, right-back Gethin Jones made a welcome comeback with his second game in a day.

The newly-appointed vice-captain played for 45 minutes for the Reserves in the afternoon before a first League One outing since early October as a second-half substitute after recovering from a stress fracture to a leg.

“He looked incredibly good and fit and we had a conversation and decided to get him off and have him involved tonight and I thought he was excellent when he came on,” explained Evatt, who also had new midfield signing Aaron Morley watching from the stands.

“I thought him and Marlon really linked up well, gave us some impetus and energy and that’s what we’re looking to do.

“We need people like Gethin, who’s a leader in this group, to step up to the plate.”

To watch the manager's post-match interview, click HERE


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