Neil Lennon has called on his senior players to take more responsibility after Bolton made it 11 games without a win on Saturday with a 2-1 reverse at Reading.
Despite Liam Feeney’s late penalty, two Reading goals in six first-half minutes, courtesy of some shocking Wanderers’ defending, ensured Bolton slipped to bottom of the division.
And Lennon believes that some of his more experienced players need to step up and rally the side on the pitch if they are to get out of this predicament.
“For the ten-minute spell where we lost two goals, mentally, we went a bit, and that’s unacceptable with the experience we have in the team,” Lennon said.
“That’s the reason why we’ve been struggling in the last couple of years.
“The senior players have to take on more responsibility on the pitch, look after the team – I need some managers on the pitch.
“We were on top and we gave away a poor goal – we have to react better in those situations.”
A spirited second-half performance, which at least saw Wanderers get on the score sheet for only the second time in seven games, was scant consolation at the end of a tough week.
With little hope of a swift resolution to the takeover saga, Lennon knows that persistence, and an upturn in results, is the only way to lift the gloom around the Macron.
“In the second half, there was only one team trying to win it, and that was us,” he said.
“For me, that shows a good positive mental attitude from the players.
“We have to take the positives from it; as a manager you can’t put the ball in the net for them, and you can’t legislate for mistakes that are made.
“We’ve got to go again starting with Brentford on Monday, so that gives us a week to prepare, we’ve done a lot of things right, but we’ve missed easy chances and you can’t legislate for schoolboy defending.
“The fans were fantastic, and we’re very lucky that we have support like we do, and I think they understand the plight that the club is in.”
Image courtesy of Bolton Wanderers, via Youtube, with thanks