Evatt Out To Change Cup Luck

Ian Evatt is hoping to embrace and re-write FA Cup history when he starts out on the cup trail again with Wanderers.

Evatt has led the Whites from the bottom of end of League Two to the top six in League One during almost two-and-a-half years in charge at the University of Bolton Stadium.

But so far, an FA Cup win has proved elusive as he looks to break the duck against League One rivals Barnsley at the University of Bolton Stadium on Saturday (KO 2pm).

“That’s followed me around really. As a player I never really had any cup runs and as a manager I’ve had no cups runs – in the FA Cup in particular,” admitted Evatt, who will be aiming to become the first Whites’ boss to take Wanderers into round two of the competition since 2019.

“It’s something we’d like to change. One of my earliest and fondest football memories was the 1987 FA Cup final win for Coventry City.

“Being a lad from Coventry and seeing the street parties and what it can do for the town and the fan base is amazing.

“Hopefully we can give our fans something to sing about.”

Wanderers will also be honouring their past by wearing the special centenary shirts made to mark the 100th anniversary of the Whites’ first FA Cup success in 1923 - and also available as a replica for fans to buy HERE.

“We’re very respectful of the history of this football. It’s a football club with immense history,” Evatt added.

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“It’s about embracing that history and taking it on board.

“We will pay our respects tomorrow and hopefully get the win to get us in the next round.”

Wanderers have more recent history with Barnsley, having drawn 0-0 at home to the Tykes three weeks ago.

That result started a three-match unbeaten league run for Ian Evatt’s men, who are sitting two places above the Yorkshiremen in the League One table.

Oxford’s 3-1 win at the Unibol last weekend stalled the Whites’ momentum but Evatt is now looking for cup catalyst to get his side back to their best.

“We’re in a good position now to kick on but we have to kick on,” said the Wanderers’ boss, who is missing just Lloyd Isgrove and Will Aimson from his squad due to hamstring injuries.

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“We know we can be better than last month. It was a pretty average month but it shows you how far we’ve come when an average month looks like seven games, three wins, a draw and three losses.

“It’s not the end of the world and we’ll keep going. We don’t like losing games. We don’t like that feeling and to be honest in recent times we haven’t been used to it too often.

“We’re looking forward to the game. We think when we play to our best we’re a really good team.

“We’re just going to concentrate on ourselves and get back to the performance levels we showed earlier on this season.”

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