Evatt: 'Ambition Not Entitlement'

Evatt watching West Brom

Ambition not entitlement is the watchword for Wanderers as they head towards another challenge in League One, writes Pete Oliver.

The Whites will go into their season-opener against Lincoln City next Saturday on the back of an unbeaten pre-season programme and a confidence-boosting 4-3 win over Championship side West Bromwich Albion.

Wanderers are hoping to climb higher after finishing ninth and fifth in League One since winning promotion under Ian Evatt in 2021.

The Whites’ boss – who also led Wanderers to the Papa Johns Trophy last season – is targeting further success this time around but insists nothing is guaranteed.

We have to be humble enough to know we’re not entitled to anything.
Ian Evatt

“We all want to achieve promotion this year but there’s no given. There are 23 other teams in our division who have the same aspirations,” said Evatt.

“We are highly ambitious for next season, but there’s a huge difference between ambition and entitlement and we have to be humble enough to know we’re not entitled to anything.

“Yes, this club has a huge rich history. Yes. We’ve progressed all the time I’ve been here, but it doesn’t mean to say anything’s a guarantee.

“We’re going to work our socks off to make it happen. Obviously, our ambition is huge, but we must stay on the right side of that and maintain the ambition and not feel entitled.

“I think that’s really the message to everybody this season, to stick with us because it’s a long old season.”

Morley team celebration West Brom

Evatt added: “We’re going to have ups and downs and it’s how we manage the downs which will really define us.

“Fingers crossed we’ll have more ups than downs and we’re very much looking forward to next Saturday.

“We are highly ambitious. We all know what we want to achieve but we’re not entitled to do so. We are ambitious but we’re not entitled.”

Wanderers are in good shape ahead of the curtain-raiser against the Imps, with a further move in the transfer market anticipated next week and positive injury bulletins on Jack Iredale – who sat out the win over Albion with a minor groin strain – Jon Dadi Bodvarsson and Eoin Toal.

Dempsey goal WBA

And on the field, Evatt’s men made sure they would take real momentum into next Saturday’s meeting at the Toughsheet Community Stadium after putting four goals past the Baggies.

Dempsey bagged a high-quality brace and after defender Will Forrester had scored his first goal for the club, Dempsey’s midfield colleague Aaron Morley popped up with a stunning injury-time winner after coming off the bench.

“We scored some excellent goals today and we’re going to have share the goals throughout the team,” said Evatt.

“Obviously, the onus is always on strikers to score goals but we’re going to need other people to step up and today other people have stepped up.

“It was a great way to win the game and a really positive result for the players and will give them huge confidence going into next week.”

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