Caldwell demands ‘two-per-cent improvement’

Gary Caldwell
Gary Caldwell
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GARY Caldwell reckons Wigan Athletic are a mere two-per-cent adjustment from firing on all cylinders.

Latics entertain Colchester United this afternoon at the DW Stadium looking to extend their unbeaten run to seven matches in all competitions.

But Wigan’s last four league games have all ended in draws, despite Caldwell feeling his side could and perhaps should have won them all.

And he’s asking for a small improvement across the board to turn those draws into wins.

“What I am asking the players to do, they are doing right – 98 per cent of the time,” he told the Evening Post.

“In both boxes we can be better, and that’s something we have worked on this week.

“In terms of how we’re playing and what we’re doing, I can’t ask any more from them.

“They’re giving a lot, they’ve improved a lot, and anyone who’s seen us from the start of pre-season would be able to see a massive improvement.”

Opponents Colchester have lost their last two matches but, prior to that, had won four on the spin – including victories over high-flying Gillingham and Sheffield United.

As a result, Caldwell will not be taking them lightly.

“They’re a good side, a pacey side, and a threat on the counter-attack,” he acknowledged.

“They’ve got dangerous players who have played at a higher level, like Marvin Sordell up front. It’s another game we’ll have to be prepared for, and we’ll have to be at our best if we want to take anything from it.

“We’re at home, we’re on a good run of form at the minute – even though we wanted it to be more – and we want to continue that.”

Latics will be boosted by the return from international duty of Will Grigg, who has helped Northern Ireland book their spot at next summer’s European Championships.

“Will was on a massive high when he returned to the club,” Caldwell revealed.

“And being in or around any environment that’s successful can only rub off on you.

“It’s a massive achievement for Northern Ireland, and to be involved in that was great for him.

“He’s very much in a positive frame of mind, and he’s hungry to do well for us.

“He’ll want to be in that squad at the end of the season, and that’s great for us as well as him.”

Meanwhile, Caldwell doesn’t believe the prospect of a long trip down to Peterborough next Tuesday will have any negative effect on this afternoon’s game.

“I think you can only ever concentrate on the next game in front of you,” he added.

“Obviously behind the scenes we’ve planned everything for Peterborough. We know our travel, where we’re training, what we’re doing.

“But as far as the players are concerned, we’re focused 100 per cent on Colchester and trying to win that game.”