‘That’s our motivation’: Bolton Wanderers boss reveals what’s firing his side up for Portsmouth showdown

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Sky Sports will be televising Monday's top-of-the-table clash with Ian Evatt looking to show how well his team have been performing to a wider audience.

Bolton boss Ian Evatt is looking for his in-form side to ‘lay down a marker’ in their top-of-the-table clash with Pompey.

But the Wanderers manager underlined it’s not a make-or-break clash as the two sides collide in Monday’s televised showdown.

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Bolton arrive in powerful form as they hit the goal trail in blistering fashion on an 11-game unbeaten run in all competitions - with 10 wins along the way.

Evatt explained showing everyone the quality of their football and continuing their push towards the Championship is his side’s motivation, over one-off success against Pompey.

He told the Bolton News: ‘It (the game) is important because it is another three points towards our target and that is how we must see it, we can’t build it up into a cup final.

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‘There are no prizes given out on Monday, but we do want to give a really good account of ourselves knowing there is a national audience watching and try to get three points.

‘We are really looking forward to it, I am sure it will be an excellent game for people to watch between two really big clubs. But it is important – probably for both sides to remember – that promotion won’t be decided there and then, there is a lot of work ahead.

‘We want to win, we want to lay down a marker and show people how well we are playing at the moment, that’s our motivation.’

Bolton go into the Pompey game in fine fettle with just attacker Dan Nlundulu and long-term absentee George Johnston sidelined.

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Mousinho’s side, in contrast, are without key figures Colby Bishop and Regan Poole with Connor Ogilvie, Anthony Scully, Tino Anjorin, Josh Oluwayemi and Josh Dockerill all in the treatment room.

Evatt added: ‘We make sure we are ready. The board have been incredible allowing us to fly down, which saves a long journey.

‘The players and staff will be having the best possible preparation to get the right result on Monday. It is great credit to the board and the backing they keep giving us.

‘We knew because of the two-week window we had that we had to give everyone minutes and look at what they had done this season, look at the loading, the data from Harrogate on Saturday and from the Port Vale game and try to balance it out so that everyone is in optimum condition for Portsmouth on Monday.

‘I think barring the one injury we picked up for Dan that we have managed that really well, and it is frustrating that it should happen in the last few minutes of the game.’

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