NEW Wigan Athletic boss Gary Caldwell says he is determined to bring the good times back to the DW Stadium.
The Scot was formally presented to the media today (Wednesday) alongside his assistant Graham Barrow, chief executive Jonathan Jackson and chairman David Sharpe.
In becoming the new Latics manager, Caldwell also confirmed his retirement from playing.
The 32-year-old former club captain said: “I want to get the belief back into the players.
“I was a player that played with passion and desire and I want to bring this into management.
“I have a good feel for the football club. I know what it takes to be successful here.
“I’ve had a lot of high moments here. Hopefully the fans can recall them and I can use them to bring more back in the future.”
Caldwell will be assisted by Barrow who has been a coach at the club since Roberto Martinez’s rein.
And his experience is something which could be vital going into next season with Caldwell adding: “Graham Barrow is someone I trust with my life. He is an old head - he won’t like me saying that!”
Sharpe spoke of his delight at the appointment, revealing that it didn’t take him long to make his mind up once he dismissed Malky Mackay on Monday night.
I was a player that played with passion and desire and I want to bring this into managementNew Latics manager Gary Caldwell
The Latics chairman was almost resigned to the fact that the club would be relegated this season though, adding “it would be a miracle” for them to survive.
“It’ll be a miracle if we stay up. I won’t be judging Gary on the next five weeks,” he said.
“Gary has a free hit. It gives us chance to plan ahead.
“We went away from what we were good at this season and a little bit last season under Owen. We want to get back to that.
“We thought we had turned the corner when we beat Blackpool and Norwich but we dipped again.”
Sharpe also revealed that he didn’t take his grandfather Dave Whelan’s advice on the decision to sack Mackay.
The former chairman and current owner is over in Barbados and was told afterwards what was happening.
Sharpe added: “I spoke to him afterwards and he was fully behind me.”
Caldwell will now concentrate on preparing his players for the game at relegation rivals Fulham on Friday.
If Latics are to pull off the greatest of escapes, it’s a match they must win.
“We will go down to Fulham and try to win a football game,” concluded the new Latics boss. “I’m looking forward to it.”