Fans have decided to slam Bolton Wanderers manager Ian Evatt for publicly criticising a young keeper of the club’s after this weekend’s game.
There was strong words from the Trotters boss as he discussed the mistake made by his 20 year old keeper Billy Crellin in the 1-1 draw at Cambridge United.
Bolton earned a point for the third time in four League Two matches, Billy Crellin’s punch went back towards his own goal and in off the post to put the hosts 1-0 up, though Antoni Sarcevic found the equaliser eight minutes from time, with the Bolton skipper firing the ball well into the bottom corner from outside the box.
Miles onside pic.twitter.com/a97hog3pbz
— Steve Thompson (@SteveThompson80) October 24, 2020
Three minutes into the second half, Ali Crawford passed the ball beyond Dimi Mitov to Harry Brockbank, but his tap-in was ruled out for offside. Many on social media questioned whether it was the right or wrong decision, take a look yourself…
?️ “This is me saying to him publicly… man up”
— BBC RM Sport (@BBCRMsport) October 24, 2020
“Disappointing is an understatement, I think the lads deserved to win today,” Evatt said. “Against a team that are flying high, top of the league, scoring loads of goals, I can’t remember them having much of a chance.
“The back three defended like men. The team deserved more.
“We’ve been let down by officials. Harry Brockbank’s goal, a wonderful goal, was legitimate and three yards onside.
“And then the mistake by Billy. I’ve just spoken to Billy in there. He’s a fantastic young goalie with lots of attributes and assets but we cannot afford him to keep making mistakes – it’s that simple.
“He cost us the first goal in my opinion at Barrow on Tuesday, maybe the second one as well, and then today. This is me saying to him publicly ‘Man Up’. I’ve had that conversation privately, this is a man’s game.
“Three points are at stake and my team deserved to win today.
“For whatever reason at the moment lady luck isn’t smiling on us. That will change, it’s a long old season.
“The most important thing is the performance. The performance against a team that’s scoring at will and top of this league was great.”
UPDATE: Speaking to The Bolton News, Evatt admitted he should have chosen his words more carefully but stood by his decision to discuss the player’s form in the media.
“The terminology should have been better,” he said. “And I apologise for that if any offence has been caused.
“What I’d meant was that there is a big step up between junior football and senior football and that Billy does have to get to grips with that as soon as possible.
“I have spoken to him this morning and he understands what I meant. He agrees with the sentiment, in fact. So there is no problem there at all.”
Former Bolton striker Marvin Sordell was also unhappy with Evatt: “It baffles me so much. If he thinks his performances have been shaky so far, what does he expect will happen now?” he wrote on Twitter.
Evatt maintains, however, that his words will not have come as any surprise to Crellin or the rest of his team-mates.
“I had spoken to Billy during the week about my concerns and it was the same after the game,” he said. “Nothing I said in the media was any different to what I said to Billy in person.
“Bolton Wanderers fans will know by now that what you see is what you get with me, honesty and clarity. I won’t hide anything. And my players know that as well.
“I fully accept, though, it wasn’t the best choice of phrase and I can’t take that back.
“And I am disappointed that we’re sat talking about this on a Sunday rather than what was a good performance at Cambridge.”
Fans chose to slam the Bolton manager for publicly criticising the young keeper, with the social media clip getting over 1,000 retweets and hundreds of comments in under 24 hours after the match finishing.
And the cycle of men treating men terribly in the name of not looking soft perpetuates itself
And then the SAME men share tweets on male mental health.
Also this shit always just makes you look insecure in yourself
— GeorgieGirl* (@castawayinlondo) October 25, 2020
Is being told to man up going to stop him making mistakes? Worst bit of man management I’ve ever seen ?
— Neal Black (@MrBlack1902) October 25, 2020
Poor to go public like this. What is said in the dressing room should stay in there
— NonLeagueBlogs (@NonLeagueBlogs) October 25, 2020
Bet the players love playing for this guy. Alls I see is him hammering them every week
— Ryan Brierley (@RyanBrierley) October 24, 2020
Surely the manger deserves some criticism when Bolton are near bottom of the league I mean it’s his job to win games
— Roan Lofthouse (@roanlofthouse04) October 24, 2020
Publicly singling players out is a c*nts trick!
— Paul Linton (@PJLinton) October 25, 2020
Shite management embarrassing a player publicly… does nothing but puts more pressure on the lad
— Jonny (@jon89gel) October 24, 2020
Don’t like young players being dug out publicly, the beginning of the end for hill in my view was him throwing Zouma under the bus. Say it privately 1-1, but publicly you support him in my opinion
— Richard Atherton ??????? (@rmabolton) October 24, 2020
I’m not convinced that’s the right line to be putting out on radio.
— Ben Horsfield (@BenTheHorse) October 24, 2020
Bang out of order for Evatt to say that Crellin needs to “man up” imo.
There are so many things wrong with using the phrase in my opinion.
Yes he made a mistake and needs to learn fast, but that’s too far..
— Harish (@hrama3) October 24, 2020
Poor judgement in my opinion from Evatt.
Young goalkeeper finding his way in the game, in the privacy of the dressing room those conversations can be had with constructive criticism but to publicly criticise may do the young man more harm than good.
— Hoop (@Prem2014) October 25, 2020
Publicly criticising any player doesn’t make them play better! When has it ever worked? Chances are he’s made the situation worse than what it needs to be. Confidence is massive for goalkeepers & he’s just shattered that young goalies. Build him up in public not tear him down ffs
— Joe Griffith (@1joegriffith) October 25, 2020
@Chrisjctheo99 Man up yano ?, his player management style seems dreadful, refusing to take any blame you reckon he’s feeling the pressure?
— Aaron Diskin (@AaronDiskin1) October 24, 2020
Not having this one bit. Publicly naming individuals is not going to help the team, especially not the player in question.
Yes football is a performance business but do it privately the right way to get a positive reaction from the player. Does he think he means to make mistakes?
— Mark Phillips (@TheMarkPhillips) October 24, 2020
Not sure what ‘manning up’ has to do with it? Just cut down on the basic errors!
— Philip Gradwell (@GraddersOnline) October 24, 2020
Only make situation worse in my opinion. Confidence is key in this position and you don’t need hammerd in press keep it in dressing room ?
— Kyle Letheren (@LethK) October 24, 2020
Having known someone who took their own life due to gambling problems, sitting staring at the machine like your about to cry is a clear sign the guy had a problem!
— Mark Padden (@ILPadrino1994) October 25, 2020
Top coaches usually protect their players – it’s a very risky move to call out an error-prone keeper.
Advising a player to “man-up” is not useful constructive critique, it’s poor man-managment.
This is a conversation that should have stayed in the dressing room, imo.
— Andrew Ashburn (@AndrewAshburn) October 25, 2020