Dougie Freedman says Bolton Wanderers are not ruthless enough

Dougie Freedman wants a more clinical approach from his players

Dougie Freedman wants a more clinical approach from his players

First published in Sport The Bolton News: Photograph of the Author by , chief football writer

WANDERERS have held a lead for just one hour over the course of their last three Championship outings but Dougie Freedman would have settled for three minutes, had they yielded more points.

After watching advantages squandered against Nottingham Forest, Middlesbrough and most recently Brighton, the Whites are clearly struggling to close out results.

Freedman admits his side need to show more resilience if they are to start putting more points on the board.

“I need to make sure the players understand their responsibilities because there are one or two new ones in who might not know what it’s about,” he told The Bolton News.

“Unfortunately today we were a little bit open – it was a case of ‘you have a couple (of chances), we’ll have a couple’ – but that’s not the way I want to play. I want there to be one chance, and we win 1-0. We need to get back to how we were playing last season.”

Wanderers’ problems this season are highlighted in the fact they averaged just two shots on target in each of the games they have played this season. They have managed just a solitary attempt on target against both Middlesbrough and Brighton, and Freedman concedes that his side need to improve up front.

“Let’s not kid ourselves, it boils down to the fact that Brighton had two or three chances in the second half and took one, we had a couple and didn’t take ours at all,” he said.

“It’s one of the biggest problems. When they upped their game a bit in the last 15 minutes of the first half we had to really dig in and make sure we kept that result. There wasn’t a lot in the game.

Only Fulham and Blackpool have failed to take any points from their first four games but Freedman remains certain that the club will not slip into the kind of prolonged poor run that wrecked the start of last season.

“I think we are better than we were last year,” he added. “I’m not worried about the start – but I know we’ve got to get some points on the board.We have got to start getting a little bit more ruthless and making sure that when we take the lead, we hold on. That seems to have gone missing right now.”

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