Boss Ian Evatt was delighted to see the return of the ‘real Wanderers’ as his side over-powered Carlisle to return to the automatic promotion places, writes Pete Oliver.
The Whites made it six wins from seven League One games as an impressive 4-1 win at Brunton Park lifted Evatt’s men to second place in the table – two points behind Portsmouth with two games in hand.
First-half goals from Zac Ashworth and Paris Maghoma and late strikes from Kyle Dempsey and new loan signing Nathanel Ogbeta sealed an emphatic victory celebrated by players, staff and over 3,000 travelling fans at the end.
“I thought that was us back to ourselves,” said Evatt. “We won on Tuesday but it wasn't a Bolton performance. Today that looked a lot more like us and when we play like that we're a hard team to stop.
“The support was just unbelievable. It’s just the best feeling; away wins when you are backed like they backed us today. It was an incredible feeling and moment for us all but we know the hard work starts now. We're back in the automatic spots and we've got games in hand, but that’s irrelevant unless you win them.
“As I've said all along, if we're going to do anything this season it's by being together and that's coming from the stands onto the pitch and then throughout the pitch and onto the bench. It’s there for all to see, so I'm really pleased.”
Ogbeta enjoyed a dream start as the wing-back scored as a late substitute to cap a win launched by Ashworth’s first goal in EFL football.
The pair stepped up to take their opportunities in the injury-enforced absence of Randell Williams and Evatt felt his whole squad was back towards their best.
“The first 20 minutes of the second half I didn’t like so much. The rest of it I really enjoyed,” Evatt told Wanderers TV.
“I think the first half was more like us, our identity, the way we play, and we deserved to be two in front at least.
“In the second half they came out and gave it everything and we went a little bit safe again and didn't give the front two enough quality.
“Their goal - even though the throw-in was taken 15 to 20 yards away from where the ball went out - sparked us back into life and we reacted in the right way. We got back on the ball and then we were ruthless and clinical in the last 10 minutes and also Jon’s ‘goal’ was clearly on-side, which again is frustrating.
“This group is really together and I have felt in the last couple of days that we have re-energised again. I know this group like the back of my hand now and I know when they're on it and when they’re not - and today they were on it.”