THERE was more misery for Malky Malky last night as his former Cardiff side recorded a vital victory to pile on the pressure at the DW.
Mackay signed Aron Gunnarsson for the Bluebirds during his time in South Wales, and the midfielder repaid his mentor with the only goal midway through the first half.
Latics will point to disallowed goals in either half - through James McClean and Martyn Waghorn - that TV replays suggested should have stood.
But with games fast running out, they remain nine points adrift of safety, without a home win in six months and with hopes of another Great Escape fading by the week.
With Gaeten Bong and Jermaine Pennant making their debuts - and Emmerson Boyce restored to the backline - Latics were much improved from the 3-0 capitulation at the hands of Charlton last Friday.
But they found City goalkeeper David Marshall in inspired form, the Scot producing two fabulous saves in the second half to deny Harry Maguire and Kim Bo-Kyung.
Latics: Al Habsi; Boyce, Maguire, Pearce, Bong; Pennant, Perch, Kim, Ojo; McClean, Fortune.
Subs: Carson, Taylor, McCann, Cowie (for Pennant, 78), Mckay, Robles, Waghorn (for Fortune, 70).
Cardiff: Marshall; Connolly, Manga, Morrison, Ralls; Kennedy, Gunnarsson, Whittington, Noone; Doyle, Jones.
Subs: John, McAleny, Adeyemi, O’Keefe, Revell (for Jones, 66), Moore, Harris (for Doyle, 78).
Star Man: Emmerson Boyce