Player guest column: Haugaard’s real thrill to be hands on so soon

Jakob Haugaard

Jakob Haugaard

I have to say it’s been a very enjoyable first week as a Wigan Athletic player.

Obviously it was great to save a penalty on my debut as we beat Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup last weekend.

I thought as he placed the ball: ‘I’m going to save this’ – and I did

Jakob Haugaard

I didn’t even train with the guys before... the first time I met them was in the dressing room. I found out the move was happening a couple of days before, and it all happened very quickly.

I knew when I heard of the interest that Wigan wanted me to play in the game straightaway.

When I spoke to my agent, I told him I was ready to go, it’s what I want.

For me, it didn’t really matter where they are in the league table, I wanted to come here.

It’s just a matter of coming away and playing a lot of games between now and the end of the season.

For me, I just need to play games at this stage of my career.

Hopefully I can get that here, and it is a big opportunity for me.

I’ve been training a lot at Stoke, without having a game to look forward to at the weekend.

You just miss that feeling of being part of a good win, if you know what I mean.

Of course you are still a part of the club when the team wins at Stoke.

But it’s not you that’s been in there and helped to win the points.

That’s what I’m hoping to be a part of here.

Obviously the aim of the team is to climb the league, which will be tough.

But that’s my goal, and hopefully I can help the team to move up the table.

I think we showed against Forest we are capable of winning games and doing just that.

As for the penalty, I knew I was going to save it when it was given. You have to have that mindset.

I thought as he placed the ball: ‘I’m going to save this’ – and I did.

It was just a guess to be fair. He went for power, and I don’t even think he knew where it was going to end up.

Luckily I guessed right and I was very happy to make the save and keep the clean sheet.

I didn’t have that much to do in the game, which is a positive thing.

We defended well, we scored a couple of goals, so it was a perfect first game. I saw Stoke got knocked out of the cup on the same day, which I am very sorry about.

But it’s obviously a great feeling for us to be going through to the next round.

As far as other ambitions go, I’m not really near the Danish national team at the moment.

Hopefully some games for Wigan will help me get closer to that.

In the short-term, I’m looking to get to know the other guys on the training ground, and looking forward to this weekend’s game against Burton.