Latics return to the DW Stadium this Sunday as they entertain second-placed Leeds United in the Sky Bet Championship.
- Match Preview: Wigan Athletic v Leeds United in the Sky Bet Championship.
- Latics aim to build on impressive victory against West Bromwich Albion last time-out at the DW Stadium.
- A minute's applause will be held in appreciation of the 23 years of Whelan family ownership at Wigan Athletic.
WIGAN ATHLETIC V LEEDS UNITED
SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP
SUNDAY 4 OCTOBER 2018
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Latics return to the DW stadium this weekend to face second place Leeds United, with Paul Cook’s side hoping to build on their impressive victory over West Bromwich Albion against Marcelo Bielsa’s Whites.
Leeds arrive at the DW unbeaten in their last two matches following three games in the last seven days, whilst Latics are looking to bounce back after defeat to Sheffield United.
Latics head into the fixture without a win in their last two games, though a victory could see them rise as high as 10th in the table.
Referee - Andy Davies
Assistant Referee 1 - Mark Dwyer
Assistant Referee 2 - Darren Blunden
Fourth Official - Robert Jones
- Latics have scored in 86% of their matches at home and have kept a clean sheet in 57%.
- Latics have scored first in eight of their opening 15 matches this campaign.
- Latics have only lost once to Leeds at home in their last five meetings at the DW Stadium, conceding three goals and scoring seven.
- Unbeaten at home in the league since February, Latics' record reads: WDWWDWDWDWWWDW
EARLY TEAM NEWS
Speaking to iFollow Latics at the Wigan Athletic Training Centre on Thursday morning, Latics assistant manager Leam Richardson brought the following updates on squad fitness and availability.
"We're assessing Gary Roberts and Nick Powell on a day-to-day basis after their injuries last weekend at Sheffield United, but fingers crossed they'll be available for selection against Leeds.
"We're preparing well and the intensity in the group has been excellent this week. We've trained as usual in the main, but we also added a boxing session into our schedule at Blundells Gym in Wigan. It's a training style we used during the summer and it worked really well alongside the more traditional training."
Latics also have Darron Gibson back in contention following his three-match suspension for a red card against Preston North End, whilst Lee Evans is back available after missing last weekend's trip to Sheffield United due to the conditions of his loan from the Bramall Lane club.
Michael Jacobs, Will Grigg and Gavin Massey remain longer term injuries.
Marcelo Bielsa's longer term injury concerns remain with Chelsea loanee Izzy Brown who had a set back from his ACL recovery in the summer, and with former Chelsea man Patrick Bamford who is said to be out until January with a PCL injury.
Defender Luke Ayling was taken off after 25 minutes in Leeds' last outing against Nottingham Forest, with Gaetano Berardi and Barry Douglas both missing from the squad in the 1-1 draw.
Ayling is set to be missing for two months with a medial collateral ligament injury in his right knee.
HEAD-TO-HEAD – LEAGUE
PLAYED FOR BOTH
Latics: 2016 (loan) + 2016-2017. 66 League appearances
Leeds United: 2013-2015. 64 league appearances (3 goals)
Club captain for Latics and Leeds United during his time at the DW stadium and Elland Road, the left-back was a firm fan-favourite for his tough-tackling, no nonsense playing style and rousing leadership qualities.
Close friend Gary Caldwell made Warnock’s signature a permanent one to bring him back to Latics ahead of the 2016-17 campaign, installing him as club captain, a popular decision amongst Latics' faithful.
The defender left the club following relegation to League One, subsequently joining Burton Albion with former Latics team mate Jake Buxton, before he re-joined Bradford City, ending his 16-year professional career where it all began when he started out at Valley Parade on loan from Liverpool in 2002.
Can you name anymore connections between Latics and Leeds? Try our Played for Both quiz below.
TWO TO WATCH
Reece James (Wigan Athletic)
Latics’ right back has had an impressive start to life in the Championship, earning the club’s Currys PC World Wigan Player of the Month for September, with Paul Cook singing the praise of the young full-back.
The 18-year-old has started in all but one of Latics’ opening 15 games in the 2018-19 season, impressing with his deliveries from wide positions and robust defending.
Kemar Roofe (Leeds United)
Leeds United’s leading goal scorer with six in the Sky Bet Championship so far this season, Kemar Roofe arrived at Elland Road 2016, having helped Oxford United to promotion to Sky Bet League One alongside current Latics defender Chey Dunkley and former Latics loanee Jonjoe Kenny.
The versatile forward has impressed so far this campaign, being at the heart of a newly revamped Bielsa Leeds United. The Whites are the league’s second top-scorers with 26 goals in 15 games.
Roofe has scored a variety of goals, making him the opposition’s danger man ahead of Sunday’s game.
LATICS LISTEN: NOEL HUNT, STEPHEN WARNOCK, KAL NAISMITH AND LEAM RICHARDSON