Dev. Squad Coach
Date of birth
The wheel has come full circle for Peter, back at the club - and the town - where it all began in the mid 1980s.
Having come through the ranks to make his Latics debut at the age of 17, he was a commanding and committed defender, equally as comfortable as a centre-half or full-back, also playing in the centre of midfield at times. He became the club’s youngest ever captain aged just 21 and in an era where Wigan Athletic were struggling financially, It was only a matter of time before the club were forced to sell their prized assett.
He joined Coventry City in a £330,000 deal in 1991 after impressing against them in a narrow FA Cup 3rd Round defeat, going onto to notch over 350 Premier League appearances for City, Sheffield Wednesday and Bradford City. He was voted player of the year at each of his clubs, also earning an England Under 21 cap whilst at Coventry. He had a loan spell with Birmingham City when at Bradford before finishing his playing career at Halifax Town in 2008. To this day, no Wigan-born player has played more top-flight matches.
Atherton had already coached back at the Latics academy on a part-time basis before returning as Under 18 coach in 2014. His side won the Lancashire FA Youth Cup in a 6-1 victory over Tranmere Rovers, as well as being runners-up in the Football League Youth Alliance, missing out by a single point after a 22 game unbeaten streak. He became Development Squad coach in 2015, as well as filling in a role as Interim Assistant Manager at the end of the 2016-17 season under Graham Barrow.