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Club News


3 August 2016

Grigg looking to prove a point as Latics edge closer to kick off.

  • Will Grigg previews Latics’ return to the Sky Bet Championship.
  • Striker has ‘certain point to prove’ in second tier.
  • ‘Unbelievable experience’ at UEFA Euro 2016 says Northern Ireland’s Grigg.
It’s been a whirlwind few months for Latics’ striker Will Grigg following his sensational end of season form in 2015/16 which saw him end the Sky Bet League One title winning campaign on 28 goals in all competitions, before scoring his first international goal and earning a spot in Northern Ireland’s 2016 UEFA European Championship squad.

On and off the pitch the hotshot forward has become a household name over the past three months, with his goal scoring prowess en-route to promotion and worldwide fame thanks to tournament hit song ‘Will Grigg’s on Fire’.

Grateful for the support, Grigg says he’s now hoping to use his summer experiences as encouragement for Latics’ and his own personal return to the Sky Bet Championship this coming Saturday at Bristol City.

“On a certain level I’ve got a point to prove in the Championship.

“I’ve been up to this division twice and gone back down, whether through a personal decision or not being given the chance.

“I’m more than ready for the Championship and I’ve been ready for a few years, so hopefully this will be my year to take that chance.

“I had a fantastic year last year scoring goals which is what I want to do again.  It doesn’t seem that long ago as well because the run came towards the end of the season which should help me in continuing the goal scoring into the new season.

“It’s more or less the same bunch of boys and we know we can create chances, so if we continue to do that at this level then we’ll get the goals we want.”

Grigg was no doubt one of the most popular players at Euro 2016 in France, and although frustrated at not featuring in Michael O’Neill’s side’s campaign, the former Walsall and MK Dons man said it was an ‘unbelievable’ experience.

“It was a crazy summer.  I played the Belarus game before we left for France and that was a massive high scoring my first international goal.

“I went into the tournament with a lot of expectations, but it was a strange one for me and it was frustrating.  I’m sure I’ll look back at it in a few years and think about what a great experience it was.

“I’m struggling to see that at the moment because I was desperate to play, but on the whole it was an unbelievable experience.”

Will Grigg celebrating his first international goal.

On THAT song, Grigg continued:

“The song was an ‘interesting’ part of the summer.  The atmosphere at the games was unbelievable and the attention on me was great, it gave me that extra incentive to get on the pitch.

“The support we got as a team and for me personally was brilliant, so I’m grateful for that, but when it comes down to it I’m here for the football and I want to continue to show people what I can do.”

After arriving back from France for a two week break, Grigg met back up with Latics’ squad for pre-season preparations, a return he was glad to make and a progressive spell for the club.

“I had two weeks off just to have some down time, but then I came back and I was raring to go, I wanted to get straight back into it.

“I’m feeling really good, it’s been a long summer which means I haven’t had much rest, but it also means I don’t lose as much fitness.

“Pre-season has been really good, we’ve had some tough sessions and a number of challenging matches, so the boys are looking strong and everything is going to plan at the moment.

“Pre-season is a difficult one because you’re focussing on fitness.  After the first few games we built up that fitness and then the manager wanted us to maintain that winning mentality we created last season.

“From the opening games we sensed that we were close and now we feel we’ve got that going again with the Oldham and Fleetwood games, so we’ll take those results into Saturday.”

Grigg in action against Manchester United at the DW Stadium.

Latics ended their pre-season fixture schedule last Friday with a 4-3 victory at Fleetwood Town in an encouraging goal scoring display, but with less than 10 minutes remaining a collective grimace could be seen across the faces of those in blue and white at Highbury Stadium when Grigg was caught on the ankle... a simple knock and a relief to the striker.

“It was a strange one, I got a kick on my ankle and one of his studs hit my nerve which shut off my whole ankle.

“I couldn’t feel a thing which wasn’t great, but the physios compared it to when you hit your funny bone and you get pins and needles.  It was a bit scary at first, but the feeling came back after 45 seconds or so and it’s fine now.

“I’m in contention for Saturday, we’ll all be working hard until then and if I get my chance I want to prove that I can do it.”

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