Latics close gap on top two with comfortable win.
- Latics make it 20 unbeaten in the league with 2-0 win at Port Vale.
- Purzycki and Lingard on target as Latics close gap on leading pair.
- Bury and Rochdale held to draws, Latics still to play both.
PORT VALE 0
WIGAN ATHLETIC 2
Latics moved to within five points of league leaders Rochdale with a comfortable 2-0 victory away to Port Vale at the weekend, as their race for the Football League Youth Alliance title continued.
A first half opener from new professional Adrian Purzycki was coupled by a late second half strike from Alex Lingard to wrap up three points, with Latics now still to face second place Bury and leaders Rochdale and with a match in hand, it remains game on at the top.
Victory for Latics on Saturday extended their unbeaten league run to 20 in the Youth Alliance, sealed with another impressive performance.
Latics opened the scoring with just seven minutes gone in Staffordshire, when he tapped in James Barrigan's cut back from the by-line to give Peter Atherton's side the lead.
Vale struggled to threaten Owen Evans' goal throughout the afternoon, on the other hand Latics continued to create chances, with Barrigan and Louis Robles both coming close before the lead was doubled late on.
A cross field pass fell at the feet of Lingard down the right side, before he fired a low shot between the legs of Port Vale goalkeeper Callum Ferrie.
The afternoon also saw next season's new scholar Nathan Randell make his Under 18s debut, coming on as an 82nd minute substitute.
Latics: Evans, Baxendale, Lambert, Gregory, Harrison, McNally, Lang (Bannister 73), Purzycki, Barrigan, (Randell 82), Robles (Sang 84), Lingard
Unused subs: Roberts, Stubbs