Late window rush prompts mixed Wigan start - Interview
Friday, 23rd Aug 2019 20:40 by Clive Whittingham
Wigan fan Chris Marsh, from the splendidly named Pie At Night podcast, reflects on a sudden rush of activity late in the transfer window and mixed start to the season from the Latics.
How would you assess last season, your first back in the Championship?
After yoyoing between League 1 and The Championship for the last few years the sole aim last season was to stay up, so anything above the three relegation spots was enough. After a decent start though, some of our fans expected that we would maintain it and finish in the top half of the table. The more sensible amongst us knew we wouldn't be able to keep it up although to be honest we proved we could be a match for anyone in the division on our day, it's that sort of league isn't it?
Wigan did loads of late transfer window business, so can you update us on what you made of the window overall?
There was a high turnover of players, and the last time this happened we got relegated. Having said that, I am happy overall with the signings we have made. Out of all the players that left, there's only two I would've kept (Nick Powell and Reece James) so we've got rid of a lot of deadwood.
The incomings have seen us strengthen in all the areas we needed. Kieffer Moore looks a handful and if we can get the midfield / forwards playing off him we'll cause teams a lot of trouble. Jamal Lowe is a player I have liked for a good few years now and I'm looking forward to him getting a run of games and finding some form.
Ins: Jamal Lowe, RW, Portsmouth, £2.43m >>> Kieffer Moore, Barnsley, CF, £2.43m >>> Antonee Robinson, LB, Everton, £1.98m >>> Tom Pearce, LB, Leeds, £295k >>> Lewis MacLeod, CM, Brentford, Free >>> David Marshall, GK, Hull, Free >>> Dujon Sterling, RB, Chelsea, Loan >>> Charlie Mulgrew, CB, Blackburn, Loan >>> Bright Enobakhare, CF, Wolves, Loan >>>
Outs: Callum McManaman, RW, Luton, Free >>> Nick Powell, CF, Stoke, Free >>> James Vaughan, CF, Bradford, Free >>> Shaun McDonald, CM, Rotherham, Free >>> Jamie Walker, LW, Hearts, Free >>> Owen Evans, GK, Macclesfield, Loan >>> Devante Cole, CF, Motherwell, Loan >>> Jonas Olsson, CB, Released >>> Darron Gibson, CM, Wetherspoons, Free
Great result on day one, beating Cardiff 3-2, what have you made of the start to the season?
The manner in which we came back against Cardiff showed a lot of the fight we will need to achieve our goal this season. Preston by all accounts is best forgotten, we didn't turn up and never got going. Leeds at the weekend is a difficult one to call. The sending off changed the game massively. For all their possession, they didn't really trouble us, and I'm almost certain we'd have got something if it was 11 v 11.
Stand out players and weak links in the current side?
It's a bit early to tell as of yet, Michael Jacobs is the one who we are looking to be the spark creatively now that Powell is gone, and although he is a few weeks behind everyone else fitness-wise Gavin Massey is one who can be a very important player for us this season.
I'm not convinced overall by Danny Fox. When he joined in January he looked like the old head our inexperienced defence needed; someone to cajole and organise those around him. But it's looking more and more like he needs to spend less time bollocking everyone else and more time concentrating on his own game.
How’s the new Chelsea right back, Dujon Sterling? We were very close to getting him before we went for Kane…
We haven't seen him yet (in the league) but apparently he played decent enough against Stoke in the Coca Cola Cup last Tuesday. He's got big boots to fill from a certain other Chelsea loanee from last season (Reece James), I just hope people don't expect to much of him and he doesn't put too much pressure on himself.
This season feels more like stepping into the unknown than last, despite the fact that last year we'd only just been promoted (again!). I was quietly confident last summer as we'd kept the team that won League 1 together and I knew we were good enough to play at this level. My current thinking is that I am not entirely sure where the goals are going to come from and while there were definitely three worse teams than us this time last year (*waves at Bolton*) I’m not sure that is necessarily the obvious case now. It'd be nice to have a mid-table finish, with no flirting with relegation what some clubs might deem a 'boring' season. We never have those at Wigan Athletic.
And have those changed?
Nope, not at all. Anything above the bottom three will do. Although it would be nice to have one season of mid table mediocrity. But this is Wigan Athletic - we don't do boring.
The Twitter @Elbalson, @pieatnight_WAFC
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