Harry Brockbank will be thrown in to add a touch of local spice to tomorrow’s showdown with Wigan Athletic.
The Bolton-born defender is set to start at right-back for the suspended Gethin Jones in what could be a much-changed line-up for the Whites.
Ian Evatt claims two more first team players have been struck down by injury in the last few days but has no reservations about putting Brockbank in for his first league start since February.
“I won’t be telling you the team – but Brocky will probably get a chance to play and hopefully he can take it because for him it is an emotional game, he’s a Bolton lad, so what a great opportunity for him,” said the Wanderers boss.
“I thought both of our young full-backs who have been out of the side have improved no end this season – Liam Gordon and Brocky were great against Liverpool.
“Brocky understands the movement required better than any of them, to be honest. His final third running and movement is excellent and so this is a big opportunity.”
After last week’s frustration at Sheffield Wednesday, Evatt is well aware of the value an early goal could have for his side against Wigan.
The finger of blame was pointed squarely at Bolton’s attack at Hillsborough last week after a succession of missed chances.
But Evatt is backing his front men to come good at the UniBol, and make life a little easier for themselves.
“We can all feel we are playing well and they want to feel something off the back of it,” he said.
“When they are missing chances, they can become a bit frustrated and panicky.
“I thought we were excellent on Saturday but once Sheffield Wednesday got their goal and put numbers back it was always going to be difficult for us. We made changes but there was no space. They were camped in.
“We need to score when the game is open and teams are going toe-to-toe with us, and that is earlier on. If we get that early goal, I always fancy us to go and score more.”
Sharon Brittan issued a statement on Wanderers’ official website yesterday urging both sets of supporters to “channel emotions in a positive manner” – and with a crowd approaching 20,000 expected, Evatt added his voice to those appealing for calm.
“The only people that they are going to harm is the football club and ourselves,” he said of the potential for trouble. “We don’t want any penalties from the FA or anybody else because of our fans misbehaving because it’s going to affect us all, so support us, be behind us 100 per cent, but please do it responsibly.”