Warren Joyce has urged Wigan Athletic to ‘move on’ from a disastrous weekend – and take out their frustration on Norwich City tonight.
Wigan’s disappointing 1-0 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday on Friday night was magnified the following day, with wins for relegation rivals Blackburn, Burton, Bristol City and Nottingham Forest.
It was a real ‘perfect storm’ of misery for Latics, but Joyce is not one for crying over spilt milk.
“I’ve said it before, it’s pointless looking at other results, because you can’t do anything about them,” the Latics boss admitted.
“It’s going to happen, there’s going to be times when it’s going to be up and down between now and the end of the season.
“The only thing we can do is just be consistent in our approach.
“You can only try and win your own games, get your own points – no-one else’s – and get yourself out of it.
“The games are coming thick and fast, and you have to draw a line under things and move on.
“We can only look at ourselves, what we’re doing and what we’ll do against Norwich.
“We can’t look at missed opportunities or feel sorry for ourselves.
“All we can do is just get on with it, and go flat out at our absolute max for the next game.
“We need to do our own jobs with and without the ball, play well and try and score goals and win games.”
Latics head into the game six points adrift of safety – but with two games in hand.
But having come up just short against one of the biggest budgets in the division in Sheffield Wednesday, it’ll be another case of haves-against-have-nots against a Norwich side looking to regain their Premier League status at the first attempt.
“It’s probably not a level playing field, when you’re talking about the financial aspects of this league,” acknowledged Joyce.
“But it doesn’t really matter when you get out there on that pitch.
“It’s fine lines, it’s added little bits of quality, decision-making, that is sometimes the difference between winning and losing games.
“We’re still a very young side – there’s only probably a couple of lads who have played at this level over a number of years.
“They’re still learning about the standards needed at this level, but I’ve not been unhappy about the individual and collective performances I’ve been seeing.
“There’s a lot of good things going on within the football club.
“We just need to convert that into goals – and that’s the most difficult thing to do in the game.”
Norwich, who handed a debut to new signing Yanic Wildschut in the 1-0 win at Cardiff on Saturday, are looking for a fourth victory on the spin, a run that’s reignited their play-off push.
“You’re just looking for consistency, and every team will be looking for that,” Joyce assessed.
“Norwich have obviously signed Yanic and one or two others to the group, and they’re too big of a club – with too many good players – not to get themselves going. But that doesn’t mean we’re fearful of them.
“It just means we need to make sure we’re ready, we’re honed in our jobs and we know how to stop them and hurt them at the other end.
“We’ve got a good group, there’s a good spirit, and a tremendous work ethic going on at the training sessions, with a good tempo.
“We all know what we’ve got to do – points are vital, and there’s some big games coming up against some big teams, every few days now.
“We’ve got a few more numbers in the squad and we can freshen up now a little bit, if and when we need it.”