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Evatt: Tough To Pick A Team!

Boss pleased with competition for places as Whites look forward to season's start

23 July 2022

Ian Evatt admits team selection will be a challenge this season thanks to the strength of the Wanderers’ squad.

The Whites will go into their League One campaign on the back of a confidence-boosting 1-1 draw with Championship outfit Huddersfield Town.

And after Kieran Sadlier came off the bench to equaliser with a superb injury-time strike, Evatt knows he may be spoiled for choice.

“I just said to the players it’s going to be really challenging picking teams this season because I think we’ve got lots of good players and lots of good options,” said the Wanderers’ boss.

“What’s important is that they stick together, they buy into it and different games are going to require different personnel.

“Their frustrations can be with me because I pick the team but together they need to stay positive and when they’re on the grass be working hard and smart and intensely because that’s what defines us and that’s what they are. But I’m looking forward to it.”

Sadlier was one of seven outfield substitutes used by Evatt against the Terriers, who had led at the break through ex-Whites’ forward Danny Ward.

The wideman added to the four goals he scored during last season’s run-in to underline the competition for places at Evatt’s disposal.

“His goal record since he came here has been brilliant from that position,” Evatt added.

“He gives us a completely different option. We have so many options in different positions now that we’re hopeful they will provide different qualities and I think Sads provides a different quality to Conor (Bradley), for instance.

“It’s great for him to come on and score a goal like that.”

Ian Evatt touchline.jpg

Wanderers thoroughly deserved their leveller after a dominant second-half performance in which Ricardo Almeida Santos hit a post and Lee Nicholls was a busy man in the Town goal.

And the Whites’ big finish will send them to Ipswich Town for next Saturday’s curtain-raiser on a high.

“The way we came out in the second half was excellent,” said Evatt, who hopes striker Jon Dadi Bodvarsson will be fit to add to the Whites' attacking permutations at Portman Road after sitting out Saturday's game with a bruised heel.

“I thought we upped our intensity and upped the tempo and quality and we created so much.

“Hopefully we’re saving all those (finishes) for the start of the season next weekend! But there was lots to be positive about.

“There are still things to work on but as a group and as a squad I think we’re in a really good place.

“I think the lads will get confidence from that. Huddersfield were a stone’s throw away from the Premier League last season, so it was a good test but I thought a test we passed.

“Now we’re in for the marathon starting next week and I’m really looking forward to it.”


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