Boyce: Now it is down to us

Latics players celebrate James McClean's goal
Latics players celebrate James McClean's goal

EMMERSON Boyce dedicated Saturday’s vital victory at Blackpool for the travelling army of Wigan Athletic fans that made it possible.

Latics gave themselves increased hope of avoiding relegation to League One with a 3-1 over the Seasiders, thanks to goals from Kim Bo-Kyung, Harry Maguire and James McClean.

We have been in worse positions so I don’t see why we can’t stay up. With other results not going our way, we needed that win it gives us hope and belief

Emmerson Boyce

The 2,000 Wigan supporters made their presence felt from the first minute to the last, and Boyce admitted the unwavery backing from the stands underpinned a precious three points.

“The fans are always there to support us and the club,” he acknowledged. “They’re as an important part of the club as any of us.

“They gave us a great lift and they kept us going. You could hear them singing throughout and we want more of those days.

“It’s up to us now to perform on the pitch, given the support we have received off it.

“Hopefully they can keep supporting, especially in the home games, and we can turn this around. We also had the Joseph’s Goal bike ride from Wigan before the game, so all in all it was a great day.

“We need to stick together as a club, and what will be will be.

“We have been in worse positions so I don’t see why we can’t stay up. With other results not going our way, we needed that win it gives us hope and belief.

“We need to build on this and if we can get back-to-back victories we can give ourselves a chance.”

Boyce was again excellent on his second start since his recall, one crucial block at the start of the second half - when the score was only 1-0 - helping Latics to keep their opponents at arm’s length.

“It has been a frustrating few weeks, so it’s great to be back,” he added.

“The fans were fantastic signing my name, and I’m glad to be back playing and able to contribute.”

Meanwhile, Gary Caldwell called time on his playing career over the weekend at the age of 32.

The former Scotland captain hasn’t played all season due to a long-standing hip problem, and has been working with the youngsters in the club’s academy.

“That’s the end for me,” he told the Scotsman. “I have been struggling for years, to be perfectly honest, and even training was becoming really painful. Malky (Mackay) has said he hopes to keep me at the club but he’s not sure in what role yet.”

Reports Dave Whelan is on the verge of selling Latics to a Thai consortium are understood to be wide of the mark.