DOUGIE Freedman has pledged his side will not be found wanting for graft in the Championship this season.

With the kick-off against Watford just 48 hours away the Whites boss admits he is still a few attacking options light from having a squad capable of challenging for promotion.

But Freedman has paid tribute to the players who have put in the effort this summer – working double and triple training sessions at home and abroad – claiming he has rid his dressing room of “whingers” that upset the balance last season.

And he reckons the longer hours he has introduced on the training ground over the last 20 months have now created a group capable of handling the demands of a 46-game campaign.

“Putting that workload on the players might have been a risk but I think I’ve got a squad now that’s capable of handling it without whingeing too much,” he told The Bolton News.

“It isn’t an approach that works for everyone. Not everyone can handle it.

“But certain players – Tim Ream, Darren Pratley off the top of my head – it suits them better, and they have moved on from being fringe players to being important to the team.

“I have got a group who I feel are working hard for each other and I think that will bring success.

“It helps to bring on and develop the younger players too. There are senior players who can offer the right advice to the younger ones now.

“I wouldn’t say we are finished completely but we’re definitely down the line in terms of where we want to go.”

One of the most visible changes Freedman made after arriving at the club from Crystal Palace was to alter the training ground routines and introducing more afternoon sessions.

It was a move that came as a shock to the system for some at the time but the manager believes the extra time his staff are now able to spend with the players is encouraging better results.

“I think you’ve got to give yourself the best possible chance to win football matches and if it means a bit of extra work, then so be it,” he said.

“Double sessions don’t necessarily mean train all morning then run up and down hills all afternoon; it might mean working on video analysis or strength work in the gym, extra finishing.

“I worked under a wonderful coach when I first came into football, Don Howe, and he would look at what would individually improve someone’s game and it helped me a lot.

“Everyone needs something different and it was something that I was eager to bring in.”

Freedman was critical of some sections of his squad last season but feels he now has a better balance at his disposal.

“There was never anything personal with the dressing room but I felt that some of the players who had got the club relegated then had the fancy idea that they should still be playing up there,” he added.

“Now that’s fine, I don’t mind if someone had come in for them, but they didn’t.

“As long as they were here we had to try and work towards success but I didn’t feel that was the case with one or two of them.”