Latics brimming with confidence

Haris Vuckic
Haris Vuckic

Gary Caldwell says his Wigan Athletic team is brimming with confidence after extending their unbeaten run to 16 games.

Latics overcame a tough Bradford outfit to seal a 1-0 victory thanks to a Haris Vuckic strike with nine minutes remaining.

With Walsall and Burton Albion also winning, it meant that three points were a necessity for Wigan to keep up with the automatic-promotion chasing pack.

With nine games remaining, Caldwell’s men lie in second place on goal difference with nine games remaining.

“It’s important you pick up points, no matter how they come at this stage of the season, it’s important you keep winning games,” said the Scot.

“We were delighted to do that on Saturday. We dust ourselves down now and go again next week for a big weekend with the two games.

“The team is confident, they’re playing well, they have great belief and they have to keep taking that into each game. Each game is so important but we look forward to that challenge.”

It was a combination of two substitutes that saw Wigan finally break Bradford down.

After knocking at the door for over 80 minutes, Yanic WIldschut broke down the left to find Craig Davies who had just come off the bench.

The big striker showed great strength to hold off defender Nathan Clarke, allowing Vuckic to nip in and slide it into the goal after a fine first touch took it around the goalkeeper.

“It was a great finish,” said Caldwell. “It was a really tight angle but Haris has great quality, you can see that when he comes on the pitch.

“We see it in training every day, his quality isn’t in question and he came up with that bit of quality that the game probably lacked overall.

“We brought him on just in behind the striker at first to try and outnumber them in midfield and I thought he caused them a few problems.

“But we still couldn’t get that impetus in the final third and then when Craig came on, he went wide.

“That was another attacking substitution to try and get that goal and it came off.

“The first goal I thought would be very important and I thought that would always be the case.”

The goal was extra special for Vuckic who celebrated becoming a dad for the first time just eight days earlier.

Daughter Hana was born at Wigan Infirmary with the Slovenian midfielder declaring: “She’s a Wiganer,” with a broad grin after the game.

He added: “When I scored I dedicated it to my little girl Hana and to my wife.”