Boss reflects on draw at SportsDirect.com Park as Max Power opens his Latics account.
- Caldwell pleased with defensive work as his side hold firm for a point after going down to ten men.
- Gary gutted with “sucker punch” as his side dominate prior to Jordan Flores red card and miss out on second away win of the campaign.
- Over 1,600 Latics fans “with their side when we needed them the most” according to Caldwell.
Wigan Athletic manager Gary Caldwell was full in mixed emotions during his post-match reflection as his side drew 1-1 at Oldham Athletic on Saturday afternoon.
Dominic Poleon rescued a point for the hosts in David Dunn’s first game in charge after Max Power opened his Latics account with a first-half drive and Jordan Flores was dismissed early in the second half after an altercation with Jay Fulton.
Reflecting on the game, Caldwell said he had to be content with the point after how is side defended following the dismissal of the Aspull-based midfielder.
“Whenever you go down to 10 men you have to dig in, you have to be strong defensively and I thought we were,” Caldwell explained. “Defensively we were first class after their goal. People stood up to the challenge and did their jobs, which earned us the point.
“I thought we were very good in the first half, we were patient and waited for our openings and when they came we caused them problems.
“We need to be better in the final third, we need to have a real cutting edge, but we didn’t really have it today. We scored a great goal, but should have created more opportunities with the amount of possession we had.
“We didn’t start the second half as well and it gave them encouragement. The sending off then really changed the game. We had 10 men for a long period, but I’d like to think that won’t be happening too many times in the future,” he added.
“We would like to have been a bit more composed on the ball to keep hold of it better, but with 20 minutes to go I’ll take a point.
“It’s a bit of a sucker punch, though, to only come away with a point because we had total control in the first half and we should have been more than 1-0 up.”
On Flores’s sending off, Caldwell says he felt the decision was a fraction soft but the youngster will learn from his mistake.
“It was a silly response from Jordan, I don’t think it was much but as we see so often, if you give the referee a decision to make then you can pay a heavy price,” Caldwell said. “Football can do that to you, he’s let his team mates down.
“He’s understandably very low at the moment, but he’ll get over it and come back a better player.”
1,653 Latics fans made the short trip to Oldham and were singled out for praise by the manager, and he feels the supporters will class the point as a positive one if more points are accumulated this week in home fixtures with Millwall and Walsall.
“We had another fantastic backing today. We needed the fans towards the end, they were singing for the last 15 minutes when we needed them the most,” he continued. As long as we can go into our two home games now and get six points from them, then I think the supporters will look back on this as a very good point.”