Winning the last three league games was always going to be a big ask for Peter Wild and his squad, especially as two of those games were away from home and a fair distance from Boundary Park. However, it doesn’t matter how far or near games are, they have to be overcome and although Latics lost for the first time in six games the performances since the defeat at Lincoln have been well worth the entrance money.
As there have been no additions to the squad or players returning from lengthy injury absence, the credit for the 14 points from six games must go to Peter Wild and the effect he has had on the squad.
There has been no great change in tactics but Wild obviously recognises the limitations of the squad and has managed to adjust accordingly. Given that the players know Wild well and appear to be content with his style of coaching, the idea of anyone else taking over the reins at present would be an unpopular decision.
Many believe that if the club hadn’t got themselves involved in the Paul Scholes debacle, we might be preparing for the playoffs instead of missing out on them by the skin of our teeth. The six points from seven games under Scholes may long be looked at as a wasted opportunity.
Consequently, giving Wild the job on a full time basis must be looked at as a serious option, and that decision should be made before the end of the season to put a halt to any uncertainty and to give the players who will still be with the club and the supporters some much needed normality.
With two games still to play, Wild will be looking to get Athletic into the best league position possible and has hinted that some players who haven’t been featured this season may see themselves in the starting line up. One of those is midfielder Chinedu Uche who was on the bench at Exeter and, is another youngster who Latics are hoping to push into the first team.
There is unlikely to be a large following from Oldham at Newport on Tuesday night given that our slim chance of reaching the playoffs has ended, but it is a game that the South Wales club really need to win to put them in a strong position going into the final weekend of the season. Peter Wild may wonder what his future holds at Boundary Park but he won’t let it get in the way of seeking three points.