UWE Rosler watched Callum McManaman hand him his first victory as Wigan Athletic boss - then admitted the match-winner nearly hadn’t started the derby against Bolton.
McManaman was a constant thorn in the Wanderers side as Latics edged a five-goal Lancashire hotpot at the DW Stadium.
After helping lay-on Nick Powell’s goal that put Latics 2-0 up inside the first quarter - one of numerous times he got the better of opposite number Alex Baptiste - McManaman was powerless to prevent the Wanderers levelling the scores after the break.
But the young England star was in the right place at the right time at the three-quarter mark to side-foot home after Emmerson Boyce had delivered James McClean’s cross back into the danger zone.
And Rosler was left to reflect on a selection master-stroke that could go a long way to kickstarting Wigan’s campaign.
“I was thinking of not playing Callum from the start, and bringing him on as an impact player,” Rosler revealed.
“But he was so good against Maribor (on Thursday), I thought we need to build confidence with this lad.
“On the ball, he’s fantastic. He can destroy oppositions.
“He did it very effectively, and to get the goal rounded up a very good performance from him.”
And Rosler believes there is so much more to come from a player who broke his duck for the season on his 22nd appearance. “He is a match-winner - we just need to bring him on to a level where he can play 90 minutes with that intensity and that quality,” the Wigan chief added.
“Everyone saw today how he has an intense style of play, always making life difficult for opponents.
“Although he can’t do that for 90 minutes at the moment, we’ll work hard in the coming weeks to get him up to that level.
“He’s a massive asset for us and a matchwinner as we saw today.
“We left him on and he will get a lot out of this fitness wise.”