Bolton Wanderers boss Dougie Freedman believes his side’s defensive display proved the difference against Watford, adding the 2-0 win was the very least the Trotters deserved.
Goals from Lukas Jutkiewicz and Joe Mason gave Bolton a much-needed win at the Reebok Stadium but it was the hosts’ defensive solidity that most impressed Freedman.
“We worked very hard today as a team to keep that clean sheet, I think we've been missing that,” Freedman said.
“We’ve eventually got what we deserved because we've been playing well, we've been scoring goals we've just never been quite what we should be as a team defensively.
“I felt that was the difference today. When Watford asked us a few questions I thought we defended very well and that gives you an opportunity to play your stuff and score some goals.
“The margin of victory was at least what at least what we deserved I felt.”
It was Bolton’s first win in nine matches and Freedman believes the victory has been coming after some encouraging recent performances.
“If you've watched us over the last four or five home games, we've taken the lead and been playing ever so well,” he continued.
“It’s just been about keeping the back door closed and I think that was the difference today.”
Watford struggled to defend from set-pieces throughout the match and particularly in the first half, when Jutkiewicz opened the scoring from Jay Spearing’s free-kick.
Freedman insisted it wasn’t something Bolton had targetted specifically but admits his players work on set-pieces throughout the season.
“We hadn’t worked on it [specifically],” he said.
“Set pieces are part of any team’s game defending and attacking and I’d be very surprised if coaches didn’t work on it.
“We certainly do – it’s something we've worked on throughout this season not just for this game.”