Ian Evatt has vowed that defender Declan John will not be leaving Bolton Wanderers in the aftermath of Owen Beck arriving from Liverpool.
The Whites added a fifth summer signing yesterday with the acquisition of the Anfield youngster on loan for the rest of the season. He had his short lived loan spell with Portuguese side Familicao ended early so the move could have.
The 20-year-old is a left-back. It means he will provide competition for and an alternative to the likes of Jack Iredale and Declan John.
Rumours emerged following Beck's signing that suggested John may be heading to pastures new. Rumours earlier this summer linking him with a potential move to Wrexham were well wide of the mark.
Evatt has vowed on transfer deadline day that the former Swansea City defender will not be leaving. The Bolton boss has explained the attitude he took as a player when central defenders were brought in and he wants his squad to adopt the same mantra.
Asked if John was leaving, Evatt said: “No, absolutely not. When you bring players in, obviously there are always murmurings and players might want to understand the reasoning behind it.
"I was a player as well for 21 years and I remember every transfer window, the manager used to bring in centre-backs. But you have to have the attitude, ‘I don’t care who you bring in, I am still going to be the best one’. That is what I expect of our players.
"This is Bolton Wanderers. We are trying to improve, go at pace and progress through the levels again, so there is going to be a constant transition of players. But just because you bring a player in, it doesn’t mean the end for somebody else.
"For me, it should mean, ‘I am going to fight and make sure he understands that I am the best one, and I am going to earn that shirt week in, week out’. Every day is an opportunity to do that.
"If they don’t have that attitude and they don’t want to fight for it, fine. It is nothing personal, we will shake hands and move on. But I don’t sense that from any of our players.
"I think they understand the football club they are at. They understand the level and the pace that we want to improve at, and they want to be a part of it.
"They are all willing to fight and get their heads down and work for it. That delights me because when you get that and you have got the right culture and environment, good things can happen. I do feel like we have got that.”
Wanderers are seeking to make more reinforcements to their squad before the 11pm deadline this evening. It does not appear likely at this stage despite Wanderers being offered players.
However, the money has not been right for Wanderers to want to take up these options and believes some are too good to be true. Should no more deals come to fruition, Evatt is happy with where his squad is at.
He said: “It is not impossible and I am here all day! I wish I could publicise the things that have been.. I wish I could, because some of it is staggering. Some of it is really staggering.
"But it is not about that sometimes. We are not that model where we just want to keep ripping it up and starting again, we don’t want that.
"We want to get a squad of players that we believe we can develop and improve for the right money and the right price. And I think we do that, we have done that. We have taken one or two loans of course, which we think will improve us.
"But when you start taking loans from players and clubs that are on absolute rock star money, there has to be a reason why. As I said, some deals just seem too good to be true and as much as they might improve the team initially, culturally it might do a huge amount of damage to what we have worked to build on the training ground and in and around the football club.
"I like who we are, I love what we have become and I want us to keep improving and progressing. I know the fans want that more than ever but I am sure if you ask them, they would want us to do it responsibly and respectfully, and I think that is what we are doing.
“Every fan wants to see that, of course they do. And I get excited by deadline days, even though nothing is really happening at the moment. I think, ‘what about him?’ and ‘I can’t believe we could get him’.
"But when you step back and think about what we are, who we are , who we have become, what we are trying to do, where this club has been in recent history, I think we are getting it spot on. Hopefully, this season will go on to prove that. But for now, we will see what happens later today but if not, I am more than happy with what we have and I have a huge belief in everyone we have got.”
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