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Hard work behind Bolton's summer recruitment revealed by Ian Evatt

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse

Hard work behind Bolton's summer recruitment revealed by Ian Evatt 12775055

Ian Evatt has lifted the lid on the extensive homework Wanderers have done to try and pick out the perfect signings for League One.

The Bolton boss has brought in eight new players this summer, two of which – Declan John and Dapo Afolayan – were already well-known to the club after last season’s loan.

The remaining half a dozen, plus a couple of future targets, have been whittled down from an extensive shortlist compiled since the start of the year by Evatt, technical performance director, Chris Markham, and his staff.

"Behind the scenes we have worked tremendously hard to identify talented players,” he told The Bolton News.

“There is a team of analysts behind Chris who watch game after game after game, wide-angle footage, filling in forms we have formulated on aspects of the game, in possession, out of possession, transition, strengths, weaknesses. We have watched hours of footage.

“After that it is down to the character referencing, meeting and speaking to them to make sure they fit, culturally. “We have done that, and I am really pleased with the business we have done so far.”

Markham, who was appointed to his role in mid-February, has brought an extra layer of knowledge to the club’s recruitment, which had already changed up a gear with the business done in the winter transfer window which helped sealed promotion from League Two.

“Chris has been a massive help, no doubt about it,” Evatt said.

“What was also important was in January, we needed a quick fix. But we did that with League One in mind.

“Everyone laughed at me when we were 19 and 20th, said we had no chance of going up, but I wanted players who could compete in League One as well.

“Kieran Lee was a good example, Declan John, Dapo Afolayan, MJ Williams – all players that I know can compete at the top end of League One.”


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