Learn more about Southend United ahead of their visit to the DW Stadium on Saturday whilst we also cover the promotion, play-offs and relegation battles in Sky Bet League One.
- Latics host Southend United on Saturday 23 April, kick-off 3pm.
- The Shrimpers arrive in Wigan on the back of four games without a win, a run that has seen them fall out of the race for the play-off places.
- Find out all the permutations in Sky Bet League One this weekend.
Latics host Southend United at the DW Stadium on Saturday knowing a victory could all-but secure promotion to the Sky Bet Championship with two games remaining.
Defeat at Doncaster Rovers last weekend and a draw at Burton Albion on Tuesday evening has left Gary Caldwell’s side still with work to do in the race to secure promotion and then the Sky Bet League One title.
Phil Brown’s Southend United arrive at the DW Stadium for the first time in their history on the back of a four-game winless run that has seen them plummet from just outside the play-off places to 13th place in the table with their hopes of a finish in the top six now over.
SKY BET LEAGUE ONE PERMUTATIONS
A win for Latics will of course strengthen their bid for promotion and, barring an unprecedented turn around in goal difference, Caldwell’s side could secure their place in the second tier should they win against Southend and either Walsall or Burton Albion lose their respective fixtures at Bradford City and Colchester United respectively.
If Latics lose, Burton will go back to level points with Caldwell’s side but remain second on goal difference whilst Walsall would move within three points with a game in hand on Tuesday evening against Shrewsbury Town.
The Saddlers’ game in hand with the Shrews takes place on Tuesday evening and holds significance because, should they pick up less than two points from their games on Saturday and Tuesday, Latics will be promoted if they avoid defeat against Southend.
Millwall and Bradford City’s slim automatic promotion hopes will only remain alive with victory in their respective games, the Bantams benefitting from the fact they play a direct rival in Walsall whilst Millwall are at Bury.
Burton and Walsall are a win from guaranteeing at least a play-off place, though their sights are set much higher.
The other three places are still up for grabs with Bradford City and Millwall both still likely to require two wins from three games before they can breathe easily after Barnsley’s resurgence up the table has picked up pace.
Talking of resurgences, Rochdale, Sheffield United, Scunthorpe United and Coventry City all still hold hopes of a late run into the top six but all four are relying on other results with the likelihood being that the Sky Blues will need to win all of their games to stand any chance whilst the others will probably need seven points from three games to come into contention.
Kevin Keen’s side could go down even if they win, but that will only be the case should both Shrewsbury and Fleetwood avoid defeat in their respective fixtures Gillingham and Blackpool.
If Doncaster Rovers fail to beat already relegated Crewe, they will join the Alex in League Two if both Shrewsbury and Fleetwood win.
Defeat for Blackpool in their local derby with Fleetwood would put the Seasiders on the brink of relegation ahead of next weekend’s meeting at Bloomfield Road with Latics.
SOUTHEND IN 2015/16 SO FAR
LATICS TEAM NEWS
Latics will welcome back David Perkins from suspension whilst Ryan Colclough is also back in contention.
An even record in the 15 meetings between the two sides continued when a stalemate was played out at Roots Hall earlier this season, keeping the record at seven wins apiece.
You can find out more about our history with the Shrimpers in Saturday’s official match programme as BBC Radio Manchester’s Wigan Athletic reporter Paul Rowley delves into the archives.
Watch highlights from our goalless draw at Roots Hall back in November.