LIAM Bridcutt is taking little notice of the praise which has been showered on him since his Wanderers arrival – at least until the points column starts ticking over.

Bolton fans like what they have seen of the on-loan Nottingham Forest midfielder, on a mission to rebuild a career which had gone into an inexplicable hiatus at the City Ground.

His performances have been widely praised as Wanderers’ rapidly-assembled squad found its feet under Keith Hill but the 30-year-old refuses to sit back and admire his work, maintaining he will only be ‘happy’ when a first win is on the board.

“We are at that point now where there are no excuses anymore,” he told The Bolton News. “We have been together long enough to know each other and we’re working together day in, day out. We need to win games.

“I don’t want pats on the back. I am my own biggest critic and when I analyse my game or the team I know at the minute it isn’t good enough.

“The only way this club moves forward is by winning games. People can say ‘unlucky’ or ‘you deserved better’ but that isn’t for me. I set my standards high, so does the manager, and that means winning games.”

Wanderers face a free weekend after tonight’s televised home clash with Blackpool, meaning the gap between themselves and safety could be anything between 15 and 24 points by the time they take to the field again.

Even though he is only scheduled to stay until January, Bridcutt is convinced the chase to avoid relegation is not a hopeless one.

“If you look at the last two games you would have said this group of players could do exactly what is expected of them – and that’s stay in this league,” he said.

“It is what it is. There’s no beating around the bush. We knew the club was in a bad situation but with new management, new ownership and a new squad we are heading in the right direction now and pulling together for the club.

“I think the manager has been brilliant, has integrated new players in the group and he’s been getting the best out of us on the pitch.”

Bridcutt picked up the captain’s armband immediately after signing at Bolton and will come up against another former Whites skipper this evening in Jay Spearing.

The role has not been an easy one in recent times but the show of faith from a new manager meant a lot to the former Brighton and Leeds United man, who believes he is growing into the job.

“He (Hill) put faith in me as a player and a person,” he said. “He knows my character and what I will bring to the team with the ball and off the pitch – I have the experience to lead this team and it’s a privilege to do that.

“Every game I am improving, every game I am getting fitter and stronger. You will only get more from me.

“I will always give 100 per cent for the team and I will literally run myself into the ground.”

Wanderers struggled to translate their first-half superiority at Portsmouth into goals last week but Bridcutt believes the recruitment of a former Forest team-mate, Daryl Murphy, will be an important step towards sharpening up an attack which has just two goals to show for their work so far this season.

“Daryl brings a great character to the team and he’s been that kind of guy through his whole career,” he said.

“He has shown he can score goals and I think that will be what he brings to this team.

“He has been out for about a month but he was out there (at Portsmouth) and one of the fittest people out there.

“Once he settles properly I know he will give us a chance.”