WIGAN Athletic against Bolton Wanderers is always a massive game – for the players, the management, the fans, everyone.
The TV cameras will be in town tonight, the atmosphere will be great under the floodlights, it should make for a great occasion and hopefully we can come up with the win.
The fans have always made a day out of it – there have been a couple of charity walks in the past – and any game against your local rivals is a big one.
Local bragging rights are at stake, and hopefully the Wigan fans will be going to work with the heads held high on Monday.
It’s been quite even down the years. We had a good win a couple of years ago at the Reebok and we’ll be looking to repeat that on the night.
We desperately need the points to move up the table, but Bolton have also picked up recently and I see they had a good win in midweek.
They’ll be full of confidence going into the game, but we’ll also be looking for the win we hope will kickstart our season.
We’ve been huffing and puffing a lot this season and we’ve just got to make sure we’re on the right end of this result no matter how we get there.
We showed the other week against Derby what we’re capable of, and what we need to do now is to try and string a couple of results together to climb the table.
It’s been a disappointing week for us, but a win at Bolton would mean we can end it on a high.
With another international break coming up it would be ideal to sign off with a win and allow us to take stock of where we are ahead of the next group of fixtures.
The boys were down after the Fulham game last weekend. Fulham are a good team with some really good players, but we chucked away a winning position and we can’t let that happen again.
We’re treating that game as a learning curve, and hopefully it will stand us in good stead for the future.
Brighton on Tuesday was one of those games where they scored so early it really knocked us out of our stride.
We created some really good chances in the game but at this moment in time we’re just not taking them.
All of the stats were in our favour, but again a lack of concentration has cost us dear and it’s very hard to claw anything back in this league.
We’ve got to make sure we start games strong and put the opposition on the back foot before they can do it to us.
Tonight’s game is massive, because we want to be hitting the busy Christmas period in good form.
There are a lot of points up for grabs in the coming couple of months, and there’s no better way to get back on track than in the derby at Bolton.
Hopefully we’ll have a few players back from their injuries and it’ll be as close to our strongest squad that takes to the field.
There will be a big following again from Wigan and they’ve always been fantastic for us. We want to do them justice by going there and getting a good result - and fingers crossed we will do just that.
l Emmerson Boyce was talking to Paul Kendrick