Wanderers are willing to hold their nerve in the transfer market to get the signings they feel can push them towards promotion this season.

Ian Evatt is waiting on a handful of players currently operating in the Championship and Premier League which he feels can give a significant boost to his squad.

Concerns have mounted among supporters that with a little more than three weeks to go, some significant areas of the Whites squad still look threadbare.

And that situation has only magnified in the last few days when news emerged that defender George Johnston had been ruled out for the season, and midfielder MJ Williams was sold to MK Dons – a deal confirmed by the two clubs yesterday lunchtime.

Evatt is primarily looking at permanent signings but has not ruled out completely dipping into the loan market, as he did with great success last summer in the cases of James Trafford and Conor Bradley.

“We are working really hard on the incomings, and there are things developing all the time, people and players that become available all the time,” he said of his recruitment efforts.

“When you are in this position it is about patience, really, because a lot of players we are looking at are either away on tours with their first team or they have aspirations to play in the Championship. Then it is a domino effect, so if that opportunity does not materialise, then they come on to our radar.

“For now, to get the best players, we still need to be patient.”

Trafford watched his former club from the stands on Tuesday night after returning from a successful European Championships with England Under-21s.

Loan players will not be the cornerstone of Evatt’s plan, as it was 12 months ago with deals to sign Liverpool’s Conor Bradley and Trafford, the Manchester City keeper – soon to become the third most expensive English player in his position by making a £19million move to Burnley.

“I have talked about divisional cycles, sometimes it is the same with the pool of talent that is available,” explained the Bolton boss. “Sometimes the next crop isn’t quite at the same stage as the crop from last year.

“I want us to own our players, fundamentally, build and create assets, players who can go on a journey with us to where we want to be, which is the Premier League.

“Firstly we have to make sure we take care of business in our own division.

“If we can own and develop someone, that is number one, but if we can’t do that then maybe we do look at the loan market. But it can be challenging because at this time of year Premier League clubs go away on these huge tours, taking huge squads, and it can be difficult to get the right ones.”