IAN Evatt paid tribute to the ‘True Maverick’ Frank Worthington as one of the game’s greatest showmen.

The Bolton boss added his name to the flood of tributes which have been paid to the former England international, who passed away at the age of 72 this week after a long battle with illness.

Worthington achieved legendary status at Burnden Park after helping the club to promotion to the old First Division and then topping the scoring charts ahead of Liverpool’s Kenny Dalglish and Arsenal’s Frank Stapleton.

Speaking at his press conference for the Forest Green game, Evatt was saddened that another of football’s big names had been taken away.

“From a personal point of view, as a football fan, we’re losing far too many legends too soon at the moment,” he told The Bolton News. “It seems like every week we’re losing a wonderful name in the game and it is incredibly sad.

“Frank was a maverick – and I have used that word to describe another player this season – but he was a true maverick.

“His ability on the football pitch was excellent and he could do things on the pitch that nobody else could.

“Also, his character off the pitch was something that you don’t really see nowadays. He was a wonderful footballer and he will be very sadly missed.”

Wanderers’ players are set to wear black armbands for the televised game on Saturday afternoon in recognition of a player who is generally regarded as one of the best striker talents to have represented the club.

He is most synonymous with a goal against Ipswich Town in 1979 - one replayed on countless occasions as it was picked up by the TV cameras - which, says Evatt, was an incredible feat of skill.

“You can see from that he was a real technician,” he said. “He was someone who could score goals, see a pass, do things that other men couldn’t in that era and time. It’s another legend of the game that has been taken far too soon.”

Wanderers will resume their promotion chase this weekend in their first-ever visit to the New Lawn with a different type of pressure than they have had previously this season.

“It’s definitely real,” Evatt said of the prospect of League One football. “It’s certainly real but there’s 10 games to go, a lot of points to play for and I’ve said to the players and I’ll repeat it again tomorrow that we need to forget the start of the season and forget the run we’ve been on.

“We’re now in a mini-league for 10 games and it’s important we focus and give our full attention to the first one of those 10 and that’s Forest Green.”