IAN Evatt prepared to throw James Trafford in for a league debut against Ipswich with a message to Wanderers’ fans: Don’t jump to conclusions.

The arrival of the 19-year-old Manchester City and England youth international has been met with an air of apprehension by some supporters who question whether his lack of league experience could be an issue.

Bolton had a similar situation last season with Fleetwood Town loanee Billy Crellin, who endured a nightmarish spell at the UniBol, but Evatt insists Trafford’s pedigree sets him well apart.

“Do I understand the trepidation, yes, in terms of that they are the same age,” said the Bolton boss. “But they are completely different people, characters, players. You can’t pigeonhole everyone as the same, you have to give them a chance.

“We will know come the end of the season whether it was a right or wrong decision but for now we have to support him, give him all the confidence and belief we can, and hope he does the job we believe he can do.

“In terms of goalkeeping style and ability, it’s a non-comparison.

“People will have to make their own mind up but I hope they wait to see him play and not before.”

Trafford has played just 11 league games on loan at Accrington but is regarded on the club and international scene as a potential star of the future.

Current Bolton number one Joel Dixon has struggled for form of late and though Evatt insists he has not yet made a firm decision on who will play against Ipswich at the UniBol, he admitted recent mistakes had weighed heavily on his summer signing.

“You want to play every game, no doubt about it, but sometimes a player is low on confidence, had some criticism – some necessary, some not so – and you need to be taken out of the firing line to let someone else deal with the pressure for a while,” he said.

“We are in a high-pressure environment at the moment with the results we have had and where we are in the league table. Sometimes you need someone to come in who isn’t as damaged by it and press the reset button.

“If Joel comes out of the team – and it is an if - it isn’t over for him, it is a reset to get some confidence and belief back, when the team is functioning better, and we will go again.

“It is about healthy competition and James is another step to that.”

Confidence is certainly not lacking in Trafford, who made a big impression on the training ground on his first morning at Bolton.

“Goalkeepers have to be that type, the best ones are,” Evatt said.

“They are always strange. I have played with a lot of goalkeepers over the years and they are all weirdos. Matt (Gilks) is one of them, probably the biggest one of them all, but they always have that strange air of confidence. You never know where you stand with a goalkeeper.

“To get hit with a ball consistently at rocket pace, you have to be a bit strange to enjoy it. But what I will say is, for all the fact that James is a modern day goalkeeper at probably the best club in the world right now, with probably the best manager, he is a real throwback.

“He has surprised me a lot with his attitude. We speak a lot about being modern team, manager etc, but still trying to keep those old school values.

“The first thing he did this morning was nearly pull my hand off when he shook it. That is old school, a good strong handshake. I haven’t had that – normally younger players dangle their hand out and you end up shaking them.

“He nearly pulled my arm out of my socket and it was funny seeing him shake Peter Atherton’s hand because he’s exactly the same.

“We are looking forward to having him. He has so much talent and to play for England and Manchester City you have to have that confidence and air of belief.

“To be a goalkeeper these days and play the way we want, you need to be like that.”