FACING Burton Albion on a wet Tuesday night in April gives Ian Evatt more cause for concern than matching up to Watford, freshly relegated from the Premier League.

Whereas the Bolton boss is happy to trade tactical blows on the carpet-like greens of Colney and contend with £30million-rated strikers, he admits his biggest task is to improve in some of the tougher environments League One football can muster.

Whether it be a crisp October in Accrington or a nippy November on the coast at Morecambe, Evatt has already ringed the fixtures where he knows full well his team will be put out of their comfort zone.

“I love games like this,” he said, looking back on a manicured pitch at Watford’s training centre, which has been good enough for England’s players in the past.

“I love it because it is a tactical battle and it is a proper football match and I don’t really fear for us in games like this. I know that sounds silly but I think this brings out the best of us.

“It is the other side of it where you’ve got to roll up your sleeves and stand up to be counted, in awful conditions and an intense atmosphere.

“That has been our weakness in recent times since I’ve been manager. It’s that lesson that I want to see us learn, but these games are always great for confidence and momentum.

“These games are great football matches and I’m not going to say we’re going to win them all, but what we are going to do is show the best of us and I think you saw that at times today.

“I want to see it more consistently but that’s going to be an Ipswich-type game, that first game of the season is going to be a real technical and tactical game and we’re looking forward to it.”

Wanderers faced a physical test against Watford and had to defend their penalty box stoutly during the second half of the game.

To complicate matters, the game was played mid-afternoon amid a heatwave which is currently baking most of the UK.

“You have to remember that Watford haven’t kicked a ball in the Championship yet so that’s fundamentally a Premier League team and I thought the way we went about our business was really smart,” Evatt said. “I thought in possession it was excellent in the first half, and out of possession throughout the game it was really good.

“Second half, when they pressed us more and committed more bodies forward and left two for two at the back, I thought we should have recognised that a little bit better and played to the third line quicker. We got to grips with that towards the end of the game but it’s just game recognition again, in game decisions and game management.

“On a matchday when there’s a full crowd we’re not going to be able to coach that from the sides, they have to pick that up for themselves. I’m super proud of the way they went about it in really hot conditions.”