Caldwell to play through pain barrier

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GARY Caldwell will play through the pain barrier as Wigan Athletic go in search of three desperately-need points against Swansea tomorrow.

The Latics skipper had to have stitches applied to a nasty ankle gash picked up in Scotland’s 1-1 draw in Slovenia on Wednesday night.

Caldwell actually sustained the injury in the early stages, but only reported the problem after the game to the medical staff.

And Wigan boss Roberto Martinez doesn’t expect his defensive lynchpin to be prevented from leading his side into battle against the Swans.

“We’ll assess Gary in the next 24 hours but we’re hoping it won’t be too serious as he didn’t have to come off,” said Martinez.

“It was a nasty little cut which required two or three stitches, he was caught by a late tackle and got a stud in his ankle.

“But Gary’s in a very good moment just now, and it will take something pretty major to stop him from taking to the field.”

Elsewhere Martinez has been able to report a clean bill of health from his international brigade, who will be assessed at Christopher Park this morning before he concludes his plans for the weekend.

He said: “James McArthur had a very influential 90 minutes for Scotland in Slovenia, James McCarthy didn’t come on for Ireland, Momo Diame played for an hour for Senegal, Maynor Figueroa and Antolin Alcaraz played the full 90 and Victor Moses came on for the last half-hour on debut for Nigeria.

“Ali (Al Habsi) was a hero for Oman again with another clean sheet, and they are well on their way to the World Cup, which would be a fantastic achievement.

“From a medical point of view, they should all be fine.

“But it’s the individual mental factor we’ll have to look at, and see how much the trips have taken out of every one of them.”

The Spaniard also warned his side against the perils of taking Swansea – who have exceeded all expectations this season so far – lightly in any way.

“If you think that because you are playing against Swansea, who are a newly-promoted side, you have a better chance of getting they win, you are mistaken,” Martinez added.

“Swansea are not a newly-promoted side anymore, and they have frustrated a number of established Premier League clubs so far.”

Martinez will meet up with members of the Supporters Club on Monday for a Q&A. For more details see www.wastc.co.uk