Wanderers boss Ian Evatt calls on fans to build on ‘intimidating’ atmosphere after Bolton batter Oxford 5-0

He's looking to make the Toughsheet Stadium a proper cauldron.

Danny Jones Danny Jones - 13th March 2024

Bolton Wanderers boss Ian Evatt has called on his fans to build on the “intimidating” atmosphere and level of support on show during Tuesday night’s 5-0 battering of Oxford United.

The Trotters manager was full of praise not only for his players but the matchday support as both those on the pitch and up in the stands capitalised on Oxford’s capitulation, turning two goals inside half an hour into a hat-full by the 69th minute.

While the opening strike from Ogbeta (Bolton‘s 100th goal in all competitions) was a proper rifle with some nice build-up play too, there was plenty of good fortune about the second and third goals, with poor goalkeeper-defender communication and a big deflection helping turn a one-nil lead into three.

However, it was the rousing crowd that ended up spurring the home side to get another two, with the clever team play which led to the fourth from Aaron Collins the pick of the bunch, and Evatt clearly liked what he saw from the club as a whole.

Evatt told club media: “When they play like that… we are a difficult team to stop and I’m really proud of them tonight.”

Speaking to Bolton News, the former Blackpool centre-back said the conversation around creating a real cauldron whenever teams visit the Toughseet Stadium has been raised before and that their aim is to mirror “the most intense and intimidating atmospheres” seen in the Premier League.


As he saw it: “The atmosphere I asked for before the game was exactly what I got out there… When the fans back the players like they did tonight it gives them confidence and belief and to play the way we want to play it does take trust, confidence and belief.

“This is a collective effort for everybody, and the fans are a huge part of that.”


The 42-year-old went on to insist, “I think it is the players’ responsibility to get the fans off their seats, and that can be with a big tackle or even some cheerleading. There’s nothing wrong with that, we’re in it together.” Be it celebrating big moments or preying on the opposition’s mistakes, they certainly did that.

Evatt said the Bolton fans were “brilliant” and that this is the standard he’ll now be holding everyone to.

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Having recently been charged for the fiery scenes following the recent derby day defeat to Wigan Athletic, in which members on both sides were involved in a tense bust-up on the pitch after the full-time whistle, Evatt, his men and the fans will be glad to be back feeling more positive.

Still sat third in League One and only a point behind Derby County who they play next on Saturday, 16 March, their promotion prospects are looking very strong and the fans are clearly helping build a feeling of momentum.


And not just at home either, where they’re unbeaten in their last six; the Trotters have also already managed a sold-out away end ahead of their visit to Pride Park this weekend.

You can watch the full highlights from Bolton’s emphatic win over Oxford down below:

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Featured Images — Bolton Wanderers (via Instagram)