KEITH Hill has reiterated a plea for patience at Wanderers as he plots his plan for Peterborough United.

Going into Saturday’s game as heavy underdogs, Bolton have a massive 15 points to make up on 20th placed Tranmere Rovers if they are to get out of the relegation zone.

Hill is keen, however, to continue a course of gradual improvement and hopes his players can avoid looking too far ahead.

“We are ambitious and want to win games but we have to forgive ourselves for losing them as well,” he said. “I heard a great analogy the other day about a caterpillar. A caterpillar doesn’t wait all its life to become a butterfly, it is happy being a caterpillar and working a caterpillar’s life.

“That’s where we are in the football pyramid. We can’t keep waiting to be that butterfly, we have to get on with being a caterpillar and embrace it. We have to forgive ourselves for the situation we’re in.”

Hill rallied against the reaction to last month’s heavy defeat at Accrington, insisting he had “moved on” quickly from the disappointment.

But, reflecting on the result, the Bolton boss conceded that a lack of preparation has also played its part.

“I look at the Accrington game and we were a victim of circumstance, the sending off, etc,” he said. “But I hadn’t done the prep work with the players for what would happen if a player was sent off.

“I hadn’t made the players aware of what we’d do when we went to 10 men and I look at that and think ‘why didn’t I do that?’ I know why, I have a million-and-one other things I have to do.

“All of a sudden I felt ‘oh no, we’re down to 10 and the players don’t know what to do’. It was hard to convey from the side-line and I should have brought two players off so I could get to what we wanted to do.

“I have to spend time trying to develop things like that, certain situations, different mentalities, a defensive and offensive style. But God hasn’t given us enough hours in the day.”