Post-Match: Evatt on Bolton's Defeat to Forest Green Rovers

  • September 12, 2020 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/4fe7b

Ian Evatt says a lack of self-belief in some of his players means training ground efforts are not currently being replicated in matches.

After losing to Bradford City and Crewe Alexandra in Carabao Cup and EFL Trophy ties over the course of the past week, Bolton began their League Two campaign with a 1-0 defeat at home to Forest Green Rovers.

Results and performances in the early stages of Evatt's reign have attracted criticism in certain corners of the club's support, but the new Head Coach insists things will turn around and there is no need to panic just yet.

"In the first half, especially the first 20-25 minutes, I thought we controlled it," Evatt told OfficialBWFC on YouTube.

"We had a great chance with Eoin Doyle, we don't take it and then in the second half we didn't start well enough.

"We conceded too many fouls in our own final third. We have to stop that, especially against teams in League Two where 56% of goals come from set-pieces.

"We kept giving them opportunities to put the ball in the net by reckless fouls. Yes, I want them to be aggressive but we have to stop giving the opposition free-kicks.

"We said that at half-time, then we come out, give a free-kick away and then 5-10 seconds later it's in the back of our net.

"It's frustrating and frustration is the word because it's lingering around at the minute. All we can do is understand there's lots of hard work to be done and make sure the staff and players go home and self analyse.

"We need to look in the mirror and ask, 'Am I doing enough?' and I think the majority of answers would be no.

"We can do more but we need to do more. We need to work harder, understand what we're trying to implement and why we're trying to do it.

"We understand we're going to lose games of football but it's the way in which we're losing them at the moment. We're not getting outplayed by anybody - we've just got a nasty habit of kicking ourselves where it hurts and we have to stop that.

"We're looking great in training but we're not taking it into matchdays and we need to.

"We looked nervy at times and got affected by their goal. There's a lack of confidence there and I feel like we need to score first. It doesn't even have to be the perfect goal, it could be hitting someone's backside and going in. It will give the lads some confidence and belief.

"Goals change games. It's a cliche but it's a fact. It changed the game today and we didn't quite recover.

"We huffed and puffed in the second half. Ali Crawford came on and their goalkeeper made a great save. Liam Gordon had a chance at the back post but other than that we didn't do enough.

"We're not hitting the panic button. We understand where we're at, know there's lots of work to be done and it's going to take time."

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Sky Bet League Two Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
19 Exeter City 2 1
20 Tranmere Rovers 2 1
21 Bolton Wanderers 2 0
22 Oldham Athletic 2 0
23 Grimsby Town 2 0
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