‘I’ve taken bullets before’, says Uwe

Maynor Figueroa back at Latics for his 201st appearance
Maynor Figueroa back at Latics for his 201st appearance
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UWE Rosler insists he has the strength to see Wigan Athletic through their current struggles and ‘come out stronger’ as a result.

The German is without a win in eight matches after Tuesday’s 0-0 draw with Millwall – Wigan’s third stalemate in a row at home and their fourth draw on the bounce.

With a trip to table-topping Derby next up at the weekend, Latics could slip into the bottom three should they fail to come with what would be only their third win of the season.

But Rosler remains defiant he is the man to turn things around, and pledged he has the stomach for the fight.

“I have been there and done it before,” said Rosler.

“When you have been in a fight, on the front line, taking bullets before, you know how it feels.

“I have taken a lot of bullets in the past and I know how to react and come out stronger.

“I have always been a fighter. We weren’t in a great position this time last year and you saw how it ended, with us nearly winning promotion.

“We are trying to find solutions, and believe me we are working so hard to try to turn things round and find that extra couple of per cent that can make a difference.”

Despite their poor start, Latics are only 10 points off the play-offs with 33 league matches still to go.

“There is still very good reason for us to remain optimistic and have big ambitions for this season,” Rosler added.

“It would be crazy to start to talk about different targets or new aims.

“The play-offs is still absolutely achievable, but first we have to turn things around.

“That is the bottom line, and only we can do that.”

The arrival this week of Maynor Figueroa on an emergency loan from Hull was a major boost to a club desperately short on confidence.

But the Honduran, who spent four years at the DW before leaving in 2013, needed little persuasion to come ‘home’.

“I’m very happy to be back home, it feels really good and I’ve already shared some old stories with players I played with last time,” Figueroa said.

“I need to play, the manager needs me to play, and I didn’t have to think twice.

“It was an easy choice because I know how the club works, and everything was right for me to come back.

“When Steve Bruce told me about the possibility to get game time, it made complete sense to me.”

It was as if the 31-year-old had never been away as he was pitched straight back into the starting XI– helping Latics to a second successive clean sheet.

“The reception was great, I felt the warmth from the supporters and it was nice to hear the fans still have that love for me,” he added.

“It was emotional to be welcomed back, but I needed to remain focused as there was a job to do.

“I also heard the fans shouting for me to shoot, which was a reminder of when I was here last time. One of these days I’ll eventually score another goal like that one I did against Stoke.”