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REECE BURKE: “HEARTBREAKING TO LOSE ON HOME DEBUT”

23 October 2016

Latics’ on loan West Ham United defender Reece Burke reflects on losing 1-0 to Brighton & Hove Albion on his DW Stadium debut.

  • Young defender Reece Burke gutted to lose on Wigan Athletic home debut.
  • 20-year-old believes his side can turn around recent run of results to climb Sky Bet Championship table.
  • Burke hoping to get run of games in Gary Caldwell’s side after recent hernia injury.
Wigan Athletic’s on loan West Ham United defender Reece Burke admitted he and his teammates were heart-broken to suffer a rare home defeat on his first DW Stadium appearances as Brighton & Hove Albion ran out 1-0 winners on Saturday afternoon.

Dale Stephens fired home the game’s only goal midway through the first-half and Burke, who returned from injury to replace Nathan Byrne at right back, admitted the game didn’t pan out as he perhaps would have liked his home debut too.

“Obviously the result is disappointing but personally I was glad to make my home debut, it’s been a long time coming, and I thought did alright,” Burke said.

“It was just one of them games where nothing went for us in the key areas and they’ve gone and nicked it right at the end which was heart-breaking for us and you could see that in the lads’ faces at the end of the game.

Defeat against Brighton made it four games without a win for Latics but Burke believe one result will spur Gary Caldwell’s on to a good run of form.

“I just think once we get a win that we will go on a good run; in this league every game is hard and it’s tough but I really do believe we can put a good run together,” he explained.

“It’s a good team, a good bunch of lads and the team spirit is there so there is not much going wrong off the pitch but we’re just waiting for that spark on it.”

Burke made his first appearance for Latics since defeat at Norwich City in mid-September, a game in which the 20-year-old progressed a hernia injury that had to be operated on soon after.

Now fully recovered, Burke emphasised the importance on a run of games for him.

“I was really gutted with the injury, especially after getting my debut at Sheffield Wednesday – which I was buzzing with – but I picked up a hernia and had to have an operation,” he continued. “The plus side was that the operation didn’t keep me out too long and now I hope to stay fit for a while.

“I went through 45 minutes for West Ham on Monday and got through it with no problems, had a couple of days off and then trained Thursday and Friday with a view to 90 minutes on Saturday.

“I’m feeling it now, but I am happy the gaffer put me straight back in, he obviously thinks a lot of me, so hopefully I’ll get a full week of training next week and go again next weekend.”

Fellow struggles Cardiff City host Latics next weekend and Burke knows the importance of the match with the Bluebirds.

“Cardiff is a big game, the lads know that, and we have to prepare well and get ready to go down there and get a result,” he finished.

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