Bolton Wanderers boss Ian Evatt makes League 1 promotion mission statement


IAN Evatt promises there’s a lot to look forward to next season at Wanderers – promotion or not.

Although the Bolton boss and his players refuse to give up their pursuit of a play-off spot in the last eight games, he insists the fans should not be put down if they fail to achieve their goal.

The Whites’ fate will be sealed in a pivotal week on their return from the international break, when they face Wigan Athletic away, followed by home games against Portsmouth and Sheffield on Wednesday.

But if a top-six tilt proves beyond them, Evatt maintains there are plans in place to improve the summer transfer market and consolidation at the top of the club, which will make them more financially competitive when they finally make the move. at Championship level.

Speaking to The Bolton News, the Wanderers boss believes post-January performances have been an appetizer for the in-store main course.

“Every team has ups and downs in a season, but since January I think we’ve shown that this team and this team are going to be competitive,” he said.

“We have another transfer window before the start of next season and I guarantee you we will be stronger again.

“I keep saying it, but they’re a club that go far – there’s no doubt about that.”

Dropping points against Morecambe and Plymouth hurt Bolton’s late-season charge but Evatt accepts it is his and the players’ responsibility to give supporters a reason to return next season.

“These results were frustrating,” he said. “But the way we play, the brand, it’s good to watch. I think it’s exciting and I think people want to see it.

“The fans want to see us attacking, dominating the ball with speed and tempo, and that’s the team we’re playing at. People are happy to see that.

“We just have to keep being the best version of us and if we can keep doing that, I have no doubt the fans will be on board and buying their tickets again for next season.”

More than 8,000 supporters have already signed up for the next term, with one week remaining until early bird discounts expire.

That backing has seen Evatt go from strength to strength with the signing of seven new players in January – but the Bolton boss is under no illusions that to play in the division above the club still have work to do on and in outside the field.

“I think we’re on the right track,” he said. “Look, we would all have loved to have back-to-back promotions, that would have been the absolute dream. But what we did was build a real solid foundation to keep moving forward and moving forward.

“What we have to remember is that it was quite a big step from Ligue 2 to the top of Ligue 1, it’s a big step. But for the Championship you have to be ready. Are we ready for now? Maybe not, but we will be when we get there.

“There is still a lot of work behind the scenes to improve and develop the whole football club, not just the first team. There are things that will happen with the academy, the B team/the lesser 23 – that decision has still not been finalized. This club is moving in the right direction and I’m proud to be at the forefront.

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