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Antoni Sarcevic: TRUTH about Bolton, issues with Ian Evatt, controversy with celebratory chants

Antoni Sarcevic speaks out on the TRUTH about Bolton, his issues with Ian Evatt, and controversy with celebratory chants.

The ex-Crewe, Fleetwood, Shrewsbury, Plymouth, Bolton, Stockport and now Bradford midfielder Antoni Sarcevic spoke on the ‘I Had Trials Once’ podcast to openly discuss his career, experiences, and problems he faced among many more topics.

The previous time he appeared on the podcast, when he had just signed for Bolton, he talked to Jordan & Gaz about becoming the captain and the pride of winning promotion from League Two.

This time around, he has revealed what went wrong, what led to his shock exit before eventually joining Stockport where he achieved promotion from the National League to League One within three seasons.

This episode was filmed prior to the playoff final and Antoni’s move to Bradford. Watch the full version below or keep scrolling to see snippet clips that have got people talking on social media…

Sarcevic on ‘bust up’ with Ian Evatt

“Up until I left, I regarded him as one of the best I’d had, he was brilliant, he’d pull me and Doyler (Eoin Doyle) in and ask how the lads were, put our points across, and it was brilliant. And it ended on a sour note.

Sarcevic and experienced striker Eoin Doyle had been told they were to play against Wigan but start on the bench at Plymouth in midweek, with Kieran Lee and Amadou Bakayoko starting instead.

“Emotionally I was like ‘if I can get through Saturday, I want to be available Tuesday,’ and it was a case of just agreeing to disagree,” he said when reflecting on he and Eoin Doyle being told they were to play against Wigan, but start on the bench for the midweek game at Plymouth in midweek, with Kieran Lee and Amadou Bakayoko starting in their place instead.

“We got hammered (against Wigan) and then we came in Sunday and travelled down to Plymouth on the Monday. On the coach, the gaffer and Gillo (Matt Gilks) sat on the table next to me, Doyler (Won Doyle), Izzy (Lloyd Isgrove), Tuttey (Andy Tutte).

“That’s how it was from when I signed, we’d have chats and it was class, but on the way down to Plymouth, nothing.

“I am looking at Doyler and saying ‘I know we’ve lost but he’s never like this, there is another game.’ “He is laughing it off and saying ‘whatever’ but I could see too much.

“We got to Plymouth, woke up in the morning and went for breakfast. You get your own individual rooms and we were eating in a room (down a corridor) but before you get to it there was a coffee machine.

“Me and Doyler are there, the gaffer just walks down, goes to the machine, walks straight back past us. We had a good relationship, but nothing.

“Because I’d played for Plymouth and Doyler knew one of the lads from Swindon, Luke McCormack, we went for a coffee that afternoon. We got back about half an hour before lunch and the gaffer goes ‘lads, can I see you both?’

“He said ‘I’m going to stick to my plan, Baka (Amadou Bakayoko) is coming in for you, and Kieran Lee coming in for you.’

“He said ‘Sarce, do you want to say anything’ and I said we’d speak after the game. Done, that was it.

“The game happens but the gaffer had a touchline ban and he was up in the stands. We were 2-0 down and it was about the 60th minute and Pete Atherton or Gillo told me to get warm. I came on about 65 minutes in, I had a great chance to make it 2-1 but missed it.

“Then the rain just came from nowhere. The video of their third goal went viral.”

Sarcevic claims Ian Evatt took issue with his behaviour in the lead up to the Bolton’s 3-0 defeat at Plymouth .

“We were walking back in and a few of the lads are having a shout as normal,” he said. “The gaffer comes in and tells us all to shut up. He points at me and says: ‘Your face since we had the meeting, looking out the window.’

“I was like: ‘I wasn’t. Why did you bring me on then? I should have scored but I haven’t tossed it off.

“I said: ‘Leave out,’ and I turned to the lads and said: ‘Sorry lads if I have been a pain for the last two days.’ “A few of them said I hadn’t. He said: ‘If you all think that then you are a bunch of…’ and then walked out.

“I took my kit off, went straight in the shower, lads were coming in there to tell me to leave it. He was obviously emotional.

“I thought it was personal. I had been with the lads, I was fine, but if he thought that, he wouldn’t have brought me on.

“I got my gear on and went out. Lowey (Plymouth manager Ryan Lowe) came over and put my arm round me, and I got emotional, the manager I had now to the one I loved. I was a bit worked up, and he said: ‘I’m buzzing to see you doing well, back home.’

“I was emotional and we had to get the coach back on the other side of the ground. As I walked round the gaffer has three lads – I can’t remember who they were – but he was talking to them and then as I walked past they all stopped, as if I was invisible.

“Imagine the feeling? This is bang out of order.

“I got to my room and Facetimed my Missus. I said I’d never been treated like that. I said it’s the worst I have ever felt. Kate said it’ll be OK, it’s emotional, and she’s like that, sees the positive in everything. She said to let it go.

“Next morning, we’d stayed after the game, my mind is on overdrive. We went down to breakfast and one of the staff said: ‘Meeting at 9am’.

“I was hoping it would be a case of ‘it’s been a tough two games but let’s get over it.’ But not in the slightest.

“They said lads who started get yourself ready, those who didn’t in the gym. My mind is going mental. Got my kit on and must have been in there for 15 seconds and Hirdy (Sam Hird), the assistant, pokes his head around and says: ‘Sarce, can I grab you a minute?’

“I put the dumbbells down and looked at MJ (Williams) and said: ‘What’s this now?’

“We’re walking and it felt like half an hour. Hirdy was looking for a place to go. I just wanted to get it over with. He said: ‘It’s hard for me to say, this, but we think you were a bit too hard there.’

“I said I’d done nothing wrong.

“He said ‘I know, but you know what he’s like, he’s a bit emotional.’ “I felt like it was personal, the way he’s attacked me in front of the lads.

“Hirdy said ‘It’s hard for me to say this, but Stockport have come in for you.’ “I was like ‘what?’ I just switched into a mode I have had all my career, I said ‘brilliant, let’s get it done!’

“Hirdy asked if I wanted to go and speak to the manager, but I didn’t. Why did I need to speak to him, if he wanted to speak to me, he would have been the one doing it.

“I got to my room, and it was massive emotion. I was still in Plymouth and hadn’t had time to ring her (his wife).

“I got on the coach and we were sat at the back. I turned around and said ‘I’m off to Stockport.’ “I kid you not, from the minute I got on the coach to the minute I got home, I was sorting a deal with Stockport.

“I look back now and think surely there was a discussion beforehand, maybe after the Wigan game, maybe they knew they had to get rid of me? It was so sudden, it couldn’t have been done that quickly, I don’t know.

“Stockport wanted me before Bolton, to be fair.”

Sarcevic on the FA Cup win (5-3 AET) and post-match celebrations which angered Bolton fans 

“I get some abuse. I have bumped into so many. You bump into me face to face and they see what type of lad I am, and we have a good chat and it’s honest.

“Then you get on to socials, the ones behind their phones, and I can take the banter but not the ones that go to my Missus. I get called ‘a rat, snake, fat’ but it starts to get a bit too much.

“When I did sign for Stockport I was advised to get off my socials because there was no point in having it.”

This is what fans are saying as Antoni Sarcevic reveals the TRUTH about Bolton, issues with Ian Evatt, controversy with celebratory chants…

@jimbo_bwfc: Watched the Sarcevic thing. Comes across fine & probs fault both sides but absolutely no excuses accepted. When you’ve watched football royalty like Hierro, Djorkaeff & Anelka treat #BWFC with nothing but respect, will never accept some chubby LG2 Manc take the piss out of us.

@pattfurey: Wouldn’t believe everything sarcevic says because he was singing Bolton get battered on tv in the dugout not the changing room and also did it at the end of this season after they got promoted but still il have it bout how awkward evatt is same stories all the time #bwfc

@bear_mystic: Sarce can say what he likes about how he left. His behaviour since he left has spoken volumes.

@aaronjames58: Watched the interview podcast. Only one side given of course but seemed all petty on all sides. Sarcevic come across pretty classy I thought. He did well for us.. and I was there for the Plymouth game and when he come on he was trying for sure. Time to move on for everyone.

@BWFCUSA: Would love to know IE’s side of the story.

@WanderasLuke: Is that it? … And here’s me thinking there’d been a couple of punches, few headlocks and an elbow drop. What an anticlimax.

@BiggusD11559466: Evatt out! Absolute tosser.

@luke_heyes: Sounds to me like he’s spat his dummy out because he couldn’t play against his old mates and he’s given him the silent treatment for a while. Petty on both sides like you said, but I do think Sarce could’ve been a bit less sensitive about it.

@bwfc454: Very interesting listening to that Sarcevic podcast both him Evatt don’t come across well at all. Seems like Evatt’s man-management is terrible & had a head loss after the Wigan game #bwfc

@PaulTheEggWhite: True but 2 sides to every story, plus Sarcevic seems to fall out with nearly every manager he’s ever played under, nearly always leaves a club on unhappy terms&ended up in non league sooooo have to take it with a big pinch of salt. Not saying it’s not true but he’s no saint #bwfc

@cp_aipi: Not having this Sarcevic story whatsoever the blokes full of it 🤣

@willprinse: The fact he’s come on your podcast and just purely lied to your faces 🥴

@58Bwfc: Him being the captain at the time, if this was true then Evatt would’ve completely lost the changing room… but didn’t. And we all knows that there was a selection of players at the time that didn’t like him so it’s quite obvious that he was the problem in the dressing room. Knob

@RN_bwfc: Clearly downplaying his role in the breakdown of the relationship. If the manager tells you you’re playing Sat but not Tues, deal with it. He 💯 sulked about it and Evatt was right to call him out. Waited for his NDA to expire just to give a misleading version of events 😂 #bwfc

@Kianb__: So he’s had an argument with the manager which happens in most jobs and then instead of working it out like most do, he’s thrown a bitch fit and fucked off to a league more suited to his level, fucking minge😂😂 #bwfc

@el_jay_cee_: If anything fair fucks to evatt, dont throw a fit and drop down a league 😂

@bwfc_elliot: Let me guess, it’s everyone’s fault except his own that he wasn’t good enough?

@torpointboy: Basically he had a hissy fit on being dropped for plymouth away….his former club…..then refused to get on the coach back…..sodded off to non league stockport within a couple of days

@scfc07: Just watched this. What a nice guy. Gutted he didn’t want to leave, and I wanted him to stay 💙

@bwfcmax2: Wouldn’t believe what he has to say tbh

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