Dapo Afolayan has been backed to have a “huge impact” on Wanderers’ season, provided he can be choosier around the penalty box.

Ian Evatt says he is coaching last season’s top scorer and player of the year to become more efficient in front of goal.

Afolayan has had more shots than any other Bolton player despite spending less time on the pitch than team-mates like Conor Bradley, Dion Charles or Kyle Dempsey.

And though the former West Ham man has developed a reputation for the spectacular since signing for Bolton, Evatt is confident he can get even more out of him by working on where he takes his chances.

“At the start of last season, all his shots from outside the box were going in but that is not sustainable,” Evatt said. “You aren’t continuously going to score from 25 yards – no player in the world can do that. It is getting him into the better areas where there are more consistent goal-scoring opportunities – in the box, in at the back post, in the six-yard box, making the box when it would be easy to pull out outside the area for a shooting opportunity.

“I saw a thing on Match of the Day. Gary Lineker was talking about Erling Haaland. Danny Murphy was saying, ‘you can’t coach that’. And Lineker was saying, ‘well yes you can’ because it is a numbers game.

“The more times you are in and around the box and in the right spaces and areas, you are going to get opportunities to score – easier opportunities than shooting from 25 yards.

“We know he can play on the left, off the left, dribble, drift inside, pick passes, shoot. We know that is already a very strong part of his game, but it is making him a more rounded individual.”

Afolayan came off the bench to score the winner against Peterborough United in Wanderers’ last league game on September 17 and has started just one of the last six outside the cup competitions.

Evatt – whose side take on Lincoln City at the University of Bolton Stadium today – has praised the 25-year-old for keeping his work-rate high while he has been waiting for a chance.

“He was player of the year last season, started absolutely brilliantly, and there is huge expectancy on his shoulders,” the manager said. “When you come out of the team, it would be easy for him to chuck the towel in and sulk, but he hasn’t done.

“His attitude has been first class and as a team-mate, he has been really good. The biggest area of Dapo’s personal development is that – being a really supportive team-mate when he’s not in the team – and I think what we have seen is he can definitely play that role.

“He is a fantastic player, really talented. He will definitely have a huge impact on this season. But for now, he just needs to be a little bit patient.

“He understands that, and his work ethic and attitude on the training pitch has been first class.

“There are no issues there and when he gets his chances and opportunities, I am sure he will take them. He did against Peterborough when he came on, and I thought he was one of the shining lights against Tranmere – I thought he was one of the better performances on the night.

“There are loads of games in October and Dapo is going to play loads of games, no doubt about that. I think he is going to have a huge impact.”