Tag Archives: tics

Three key dates for Wigan Athletic next season

The fixtures are out. Away days are being planned. Now can we sign some players, please?

It’s been a quiet summer so far at Wigan, which was needed after the stress of threat of relegation. Thankfully Leeds’ yearly bottling job happened against Wigan. Here’s to you, Gavin Massey.

We started really well last year with wins over Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest and Stoke.

It’s important for teams like ourselves to start well, build confidence at home and look to pick up the odd point away. In our experience, it’s usually two or three away wins a season.

So, I have a look at three potentially key dates in our season…

Saturday 3rd August – Cardiff (H)

Our home form last season was brilliant throughout, had it not been, we would’ve been relegated without a doubt. It’s often said the best time to play recently relegated sides is at the start, kick them while they’re down. However, Warnock knows the league, they’ll be up for it from day one. A manager that always has sides well equipped for the league, tough, hard-working with quality up front that can hurt you. It’ll be a tough game, also a good opportunity to continue our solid home form and start the season well.

Saturday 10th August – Preston (A)

Derby day. First away game of the season. 4,000 ‘tics fans. Please don’t lose 4-0 again.

This is a massive game, in my opinion. It will just set the tone for the season. Last season, our away form was dreadful – it felt like we just needed one big away result to kickstart us, it never came, we got no luck whatsoever. Whether it was a refereeing decision, a last minute goal against us, nothing went for us. It’s a huge chance to really get the fans behind the lads for the season. Everyone loves the first away day anyway, it could be a real day to remember if we could beat Preston at Deepdale.

Monday 13th April – Barnsley (A)

I expect us to have the league wrapped up by then, maybe a tad optimistic, we’ll see. Barnsley will have a good season, they play an attractive style of football with a young squad. It’s my favourite away day, and it’s on a bank holiday Monday – the countdown is on. It’s impossible to predict where both sides will be positioned at this point, I just hope Wigan are well away from the relegation zone so I can just have an enjoyable day in Yorkshire watching the ‘tics win 0-4.

Is Liverpool Youngster’s Link To Wigan Athletic a Good Move?

Wigan are interested in signing Liverpool youngster Ben Woodburn on loan. The youngster is very highly rated at Melwood and looking for first-team football in the Championship next season.

The Welsh international was loaned to Sheffield United last campaign, however, featured just seven times. Nevertheless, they did win promotion and Chris Wilder is a manager that makes minimal changes to his starting 11. The Blades play direct football, and 4-4-2, which didn’t suit Woodburn who likes to play as a winger or directly behind the striker.

Harry Wilson scored 20 goals last season for Derby, also loaned out from Liverpool, showing they aren’t on their books for nothing. They are super talents and a massive part of their future. That’s a tip in itself, if Jurgen Klopp sees them as future starters, they must be pretty good. So yeah, get it done Cookie, we’ll have Woodburn, Wilson and Sadio Mane.

With Nick Powell departing, it’s looking like Josh Windass will be given an opportunity to prove his worth in the side. I’m happy with that, as long as we sign a Woodburn type player as a back-up. Signing Woodburn as a direct replacement for Powell would be a risk, considering he only played seven times last season. Powell was our most influential player, so we need his replacement to have an immediate impact and start scoring/creating goals from the off.

It wouldn’t be fair to pile all that pressure on Woodburn. Give Windass his long-awaited chance and ease the youngster into the squad. If he’s as good as Liverpool seem to think, then he’ll walk into our side. Cook is a scouser, so maybe that gives us an advantage. He was at the Champions League final, maybe he agreed a few deals with Mr Klopp over a celebratory glass of wine? Morsy’s not for sale, and too good for Liverpool.

Wigan Athletic Let Six Go Ahead of Next Season’s Shake-Up

The retained and released list have been flying around in recent weeks, and today Wigan have made their‘s public.

Darron Gibson, Callum McManaman, Shaun MacDonald, Jonas Olsson,
James Vaughan and Dan Lavercombe have all been released, while last seasons joint top scorer Nick Powell and back up goalkeeper Owen Evans have been offered contracts.

Paul Cook will look to build on last seasons final hurdle form, as Wigan survived relegation with some brilliant form. Unfortunately, they won’t have the promising Chelsea youngster Reece James in the ranks as he returns to his club alongside Christian Walton (Brighton & Hove Albion), Antonee Robinson (Everton), Beni Baningime (Everton) and Leon Clarke (Sheffield United) who all impressed last season.

Wigan fans, however, will be looking forward to striker Callum Lang returning after a great season with Oldham Athletic where he scored 13 goals in 42 games in League Two, alongside Leo Da Silva Lopes from his spell at Gillingham.

Looking to promote some youth into the team, the Tics have given professional contracts to Charlie Jolley, Kyle Joseph, Joe Gelhardt and Emeka Obi while talks are still ongoing with Adam Long, Scott Smith, Will McGuffie, Victor Maffeo, James Berry and Divin Baningime.

All in all, Wigan will be wanting to better last season’s 18th place finish, and if anything it showed that Wigan can mix it with the big boys when they need to after the results against Leeds and Norwich.

Realistically a solid mid-table finish would be ideal, as they look to make steady progress back into the Premier League over the coming years. With Paul Cook at the helm, they also have a great manager who can steer Wigan back to the good times once again.

Wigan fans what do you make of your retained/released list?

Chelsea’s Reece James is Certainly One To Watch Out For As Well Wigan Fans Know

Reece James certainly made an impact during his time at Wigan Athletic, with many fans, singling out the Chelsea loanee out as one of the sole reasons the Tics stayed up this season.

Even at the tender age of 19, James is attracting interest from the big fish in the Premier League. However, it seems highly unlikely the defender will be going anywhere close to a rival, with another loan move likely on the cards next season to a possible mid-table team.

Everyone at Wigan is going to sorely miss James going off the love he’s received on social media. Especially, after collecting Wigan’s player’s player of the season and player of the season awards, which was well-deserved after playing the most amount of minutes this campaign.

Cook, the Wigan boss would love another season mentoring the youngster, and you have to applaud the growth James has shown under him.

Especially making the move up north last season, many would not have taken their chances and positively help his temporary side out like James has done this season. He seems to have matured and grown, not only as a footballer but as a man – leading him to be named Captain in his final game.

James received a standing ovation in his captained final game, as he was substituted in the 90th minute against Millwall. His two goals and one assist in that final run-in, helped Wigan end up 12 points clear of the relegation zone and has given them a decent platform for next season in the Championship.

Again Wigan left it till the end of the season to show what they are made of, and more importantly, capable of. We have seen this happen many a time in the Premier League under former boss Roberto Martinez and Paul Jewell.

Maybe, James’ influence will have a lasting impression on the Wigan squad, with that sprinkle of Premier League standard giving the whole squad a lift.

Everyone will miss his strong dribbling and crossing ability, alongside his key passing. In which he assisted three times last season, which is not bad for a young defender indeed.

So, Wigan fans which player would you like on loan next season that could have the impact Reece James had last season?

Three times Wigan have Wiganed themselves

Urban Dictionary:

Wigan(verb) To do f**k all for a period of time before being saved by temporary brilliance.

E.g “I didn’t study but I Wiganed that test.”

Wigan Athletic were known in the Premier League for such feats during Roberto Martinez’ time at the club, this season under Paul Cook once again they Wiganed themselves to safety.

Two wins and two draws out of the last five games, have seen the Tics climb to 18th and nine points from safety. A remarkable turnaround, especially with them having been lurking around the bottom three in recent months.

Stunning results against Leeds and Norwich would have left fans wondering what could have been, if these levels were reached on a consistent basis for more than the last month of the season.

However, this is not the first time Wigan have done this, has we take a look at some of the Tics greatest escapes…

Wigan Athletic 2012

Wigan made their most incredible escape from relegation in 2012 under Roberto Martinez. They had a terrible start to the season, and it snowballed throughout the season, with nine games left a miracle was needed.

What followed was not just a miracle, but more of a movie script. Latics won seven out of their last nine games. beating the likes of Man United, Liverpool and Arsenal along the way.

They finished 15th and seven points clear of the relegation zone.

Wigan Athletic 2011

The Latics started the final game of the season in 19th place after hovering around the bottom three for the majority of the season after winning only seven games all season.

They had a decent run into the quarter finals of the League Cup, however the final four games became the highlight of the season – winning two and drawing two, pulling themselves out of the bottom three to finish 16th on the final day.

Wigan Athletic 2006

In Wigan’s second season, they struggled and failed to hit the highs of their first season. Having hit a little bit of a purple patch in October/November, Latics season nose dived.

On the last game of the season, Wigan needed to win to stand a chance of safety against fellow strugglers Sheffield United.

A 2-1 win ensured Premier League survival by one goal having finished level on points with the Blades

POTY Nathan Byrne Signs New Wigan Athletic Contract

Wigan Athletic are delighted to confirm that Nathan Byrne has signed a new two-and-a-half year contract with the club, which will see him remain at the DW Stadium until the summer of 2021.

Byrne, 26, has featured 80 times in all competitions for Latics since signing from Wolverhampton Wanderers in the summer of 2016.

A star player under the management of Paul Cook and the current North West Football Awards League One Player of the Year, Byrne was named both the Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year in Latics’ record-breaking 2017-18 campaign and his manager is delighted to secure his long-term future.

“Nathan has been an important player for us in my time here and I am pleased that he can continue to progress with Wigan Athletic,” Cook said.

“He is a popular member of the dressing room and, equally so, a player that our supporters regard highly.”

2017-18 Double Player of the Year winner commits future to Latics, signing until the summer of 2021.

  • Nathan Byrne signs new Wigan Athletic contract
  • Byrne, 26, signs two-and-a-half-year deal which sees him commit his future to Latics until the summer of 2021
  • Paul Cook: “Nathan has been an important player for us in my time here and I am pleased that he can continue to progress with Wigan Athletic.”