JAMES McCarthy has called on Wigan Athletic to take out the frustrations of their Boxing Day beating at Manchester United on Stoke City this afternoon.
Latics saw the wheels come off their recent resurgence at Old Trafford, when Conor Sammon’s controversial sending-off paved the way for a 5-0 win for the hosts.
Sammon’s unjust red card has since been rightly appealed and expunged from the records, meaning he is available for the season-ending trip to the Britannia Stadium.
But McCarthy says Latics need a good performance against the Potters to make up for the damage caused by the Boxing Day result.
“It was a disappointing way to get beat especially with the way we’ve played over the last couple of weeks,” McCarthy told the Evening Post.
“But we’ve dusted ourselves down and we’ve got ourselves ready for Stoke.
“Stoke will always mean some great memories for us after what happened there on the final day of last season, and they’re not an easy side to play against.
“They added to an already great squad with some good signings over the summer, and we’ll have our work cut out to get anything.
“It’s another massive game for us, but it’s important we try to get back to winning ways and get out of the bottom three. “
Latics will certainly be hoping for a kinder bounce of the ball in the Potteries than they got at Old Trafford where, not for the first time, everything seemed to go against the visitors.
“Sometimes it goes for you and sometimes it doesn’t, and it certainly didn’t go for us on that night,” McCarthy added.
“People who weren’t at the game will maybe look at the scoreline and think we got battered, but it wasn’t like that.
“The sending off killed us, they scored again just before half-time, they scored again just after half-time and then the penalty at the end wasn’t even a penalty.
“I was two yards away from it and it was definitely outside the box, but he gave it as a penalty.
“Conor’s red card, to be honest I think even a yellow card would have been soft - I just don’t know what he’s seen to make it a red.
“I had a word with Phil (Dowd) after, and he said he’d got it right – but I don’t think he did.
“It perhaps comes with being a small club, but we never seem to get decisions like that.
“It is hard coming to places like that, with their fans screaming from the off, and we know it’ll be similar at Stoke.
“But if we stick together and play as we know we can, we can go there and get another positive result.”