Dougie Freedman was left frustrated after defeat against Championship-strugglers Ipswich Town put a significant dent in Bolton Wanderers play-off hopes.
A late goal from Tractor Boys’ midfielder Carlos Edwards proved enough to secure a double over Wanderers, and a vital win for Mick McCarthy’s men to end Bolton’s eight-match unbeaten run.
In a hard-fought game the Trotters created few chances, and although his side’s commitment was never in doubt, Freedman believes their decision making in the final third let them down.
“We are obviously disappointed with the result,” he said. “The lads in the dressing at full time were upset that we didn’t win the game.
“I felt we were dominant in possession throughout, but that we could have possibly worked the goalkeeper a little more when we were going forward.
“We did make chances and created the opportunities in the final third, but that final decision as to whether to shoot or pass wasn’t quite right.
“The commitment was certainly there from both sets of players and I thought it was a tough Championship game, with two sides going all out for the win.”
Bolton arrived at Portman Road with a spring in their step after a string of victories had rejuvenated their play-off hopes.
Hungarian stopper Adam Bogdan returned to the Trotters bench after recovering from injury while Craig Davies stepped in for Kevin Davies to spearhead Bolton’s attack.
Ipswich dominated the opening 45 minutes and only the woodwork and a string of fine saves from Andy Lonergan denied the home side a deserved lead.
Following the restart both sides failed to find their groove – Ipswich striker Daryl Murphy squandered the best of the opportunities following Zat Knight’s wayward pass.
However the home side managed to break the deadlock on 88 minutes when captain Edwards, having seen his initial shot blocked, fired low past Lonergan.
Ipswich held on for a much-needed victory, however despite the loss Freedman insisted his side may still reach the play-offs.
“I’ve been in this game a long time and know that there’s still a long way to go,” he explained.
“The important thing is that we don’t look back. We’ll now go away and regroup over the international break and come back fresh for our next away trip to Charlton.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that we can go on another unbeaten run if we play the way we are at the moment.”