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Club News


19 April 2016

Boss reflects on 1-1 draw at the Pirelli Stadium as Latics maintain three-point gap in top spot in Sky Bet League One.

  • “In terms of effort, desire and commitment, the players were outstanding,” Caldwell.
  • Gary disappointed to lose goal from set-piece with Latics looking solid in open play.
  • Caldwell hopes to get the DW “rocking” for the visit of Southend on Saturday.
Wigan Athletic manager Gary Caldwell was content with his side’s 1-1 draw at Burton Albion in Sky Bet League One as Latics maintained their three-point lead on the Brewers with three games remaining.

Michael Jacobs gave Latics an eighth minute lead but Tom Naylor levelled for Nigel Clough’s side just before half-time with neither side then creating a clear-cut opportunity to win the game in the second 45 minutes.

Reflecting post-match with LaticsPlayer HD, Caldwell praised his side’s battling qualities against a Burton side that have only tasted defeat on two occasions at the Pirelli Stadium in Sky Bet League One this season.

“I am delighted with a point,” Caldwell said. “It was always going to be tough game against a team who are second in the league and have had very good home form this year.

“We had to battle and we had to scrap but I thought after 20 minutes we had good control of the game and the disappointing thing was that we lost that control and we didn’t pass the ball as well as we could.

“In terms of effort, desire and commitment to get a positive result, the players were outstanding.”

Latics did look in control of the game in Derbyshire but, after conceding from two set-pieces at Doncaster Rovers on Saturday, a delivery into the box was again Latics’ Achilles heel.

That proved a disappointing factor for Caldwell who then saw his side struggle to find their regular fluency in the second-half.

“I couldn’t see them scoring from open play and we were undone from a set-piece again and that is disappointing at any time,” he added.

“I think Burton wanted to make it scrappy in the second-half; they wanted it that way, they made it that way and I don’t think the referee helped with the amount of times he penalised little fouls from us whereas they got away with quite a lot.

“It became a stop-start game second-half and that doesn’t suit us.”

Jacobs’ return to the starting XI was one of four changes made by Caldwell as he shuffled his pack and he was pleased with the efforts of the former Derby County man, who grabbed the opening goal.

“Michael and Conor [McAleny] caused them problems early on with the formation but the disappointing thing for us was that we didn’t take the game to them more in that spell and score more goals,” he continued.

“Michael is a quality player, though, and he came up with the goods again.”

Latics did nearly steal the win late on when Chris McCann blazed over but Latics now go into Saturday’s home game with Southend United knowing a win would all-but secure promotion should Walsall or Burton lose their respective games.

“I thought we had a great chance when Haris played it across to Chris but he just hit it too hard,” Caldwell explained.

“That was the story of the night and I felt we just lacked a little bit of quality at times, that’s not like us because we normally have that final pass or bit of quality in and around the box but we’ll work hard to get that right on Saturday.

“We have to go into Saturday and produce a better performance and look for the win.

“It is still in our own hands, it is one game less and we are still in a good position so we look forward to Saturday, we hope to get the DW rocking and get three points to keep us on our way to the title.”

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