Bolton Wanderers told to reproduce away form at the Reebok Stadium
MANAGER Dougie Freedman is challenging his Wanderers players to transfer their impressive away form back to home turf when relegation-threatened Barnsley visit the Reebok tomorrow.
The Whites go into the game off the back of successive away wins at Huddersfield and Doncaster looking to complete a hat-trick of victories against Yorkshire opposition.
But it has been an indifferent campaign on home soil and while results have picked up in the recent run of just one defeat in 11 matches, Freedman is still demanding improvement in front of the Reebok faithful.
Draws have been their downfall on their own patch this campaign with half of the 20 home games ending in stalemate.
Wanderers have lost two more at the Reebok than they did all last season but have won just five compared to 14 in 2012/13.
In contrast they have almost doubled the four wins they had on the road last season.
Freedman said: “Our away form has been fantastic, but at home it has been the draws that have been hard to take.
“It’s a good challenge going back home after these two away wins because, although performances have been good at the Reebok, we have never really killed teams off consistently.
“Even in games we have lost we have done well – I thought we were fantastic against Burnley at the Reebok.
“But we have to be more convincing at home.”
Freedman has been pleased with the good run that has moved Wanderers away from any lingering concerns of being embroiled in a battle down at the wrong end of the Championship table.
He accepts the poor start to the campaign made for a tough season but sees light at the end of the tunnel following some impressive recent displays.
And he has reiterated the importance of the last five games as he starts to plan ahead to next season and the make up of his squad.
The Scot added: “The first 10 games we didn’t get out of bed which is a disappointment for us.
“Once we realised what we were all about, we knuckled down and we are now starting to show we are capable of moving forward.
“We are not making as many silly errors like we were at the start of the season.
“It is coming good and it has been a good week so far.
“I am really excited to see how the season is going to finish.
“The group is changing month on month with loans and new faces and personnel.
“I have still have to look at players for next season, some are playing for contracts.
“Decisions have not been made yet for both football and financial reasons.
“So there is still lots to play for and look at in the last few games.”