IAN Evatt plans to think about his own future and the potential of a summer clear-out after Wanderers’ Wembley disaster.

A spell of soul-searching lies ahead for the Bolton boss after a 2-0 defeat against Oxford United, which means a fourth successive season in League One.

Evatt conceded that neither he nor his players could complain about criticism after a dire display in front of 32,000 Whites fans at the play-off final.

Having missed out on automatic promotion to Portsmouth and Derby County, Wanderers blew their only remaining chance with Josh Murphy scoring both goals for the dominant and well-drilled opposition.

Such a desperately disappointing end to the campaign means that there are big decisions to be made by the club, both in regard to Evatt’s position and the core of his squad, which has now fallen just short in successive years.

“I will be thinking about everything,” said the manager, when asked what he now had to consider in the coming weeks. “I am a really hard-working, straight-talking guy, and the first person I look at is myself, always. Football is a game of blame, it is a blame culture, and it can be about self-preservation and finger pointing.

“But you can only get better by looking at yourself in the mirror and everyone needs to do that.

“I need to do that. Every player in the dressing room needs to do it. Then we will think about what is next.”

Evatt was at a loss to explain how his team had failed to perform, insisting that Oxford had not offered any tactical surprises on the day.

He offered apologies to the fanbase and pledged to look at every aspect of the disappointment to find the root cause.

He said: “For now, my thoughts are on how we could be so poor and so off-colour, how things could go so wrong. Our preparation was great, the game looked exactly as we had prepared for. We spoke out counter-attacking, transitions, them plugging gaps and being hard to beat. But one to 11 and the guys who came off the bench, nobody executed. In turn, it produced that, and we have let go a massive opportunity.

“The summer will be the summer and I will have time to think about what is next. Initially, my thoughts will be on how and why, and just to apologise to everyone.

“We all let the fans down, everyone – myself, players, staff – we all have to own it.

“It was poor quality. We have had a lot of things thrown at us this season and I have been the one to fight our corner but today it is inexcusable. I don’t really have the answers.”

Evatt described the Oxford defeat as Bolton’s worst display of the season.

“It was unrecognisable from minute one,” he said. “You have seen a lot of us this season, and we are fast, aggressive, we are intense, but we looked the complete opposite.

“It was the worst performance of the season on the biggest stage and it wasn’t just one or two things wrong, it was everyone and everything. That is bitterly, bitterly disappointing and we have to think about why it happened.

“There is a lot of frustration, a lot of hurt, we have let the fans down. I will stand up for myself and I will stand up for the players when I think that we have been harshly critiqued but there, w deserve everything that comes our way.”