A newly-wed American couple have made Wigan an unlikely honeymoon destination after flying over 4,000 miles to watch a Latics fixture.
Rather than a getaway to a remote beach or romantic city break, Mike and Jordan Fabert, who live just outside of Cleveland, Ohio, couldn’t resist the chance to take in a Wigan Athletic match while on a visit to the UK.
The couple were in the stands the DW Stadium last weekend to see the team end West Brom’s seven-game unbeaten streak, thanks to a second-half strike from Josh Windass.
“It was amazing!” said Mike, 34.
“It was super cool, the atmosphere was awesome. The fans are unlike anything back home. It’s very intense.”
He added: “It was a fantastic result - I didn’t come all this way for a loss!”
Mike’s love affair with Wigan Athletic began when the team played his nearest Major League Soccer team, Columbus Crew, in a pre-season friendly in July 2013 - just two months before he met his now wife, Jordan.
Mike said: “I met some people from Wigan, and met a few of the players - Callum McManaman, Sean Maloney, Roger Espinoza, even the manager Owen Coyle.
“I wound up falling in love with Wigan.”
“A routine soon emerged of Mike tuning in at 10am EST, every Saturday morning, to watch Latics in action.
“We really enjoy watching the European clubs more than the ones back home, because it’s a higher level of talent, and there is a better atmosphere,” Mike said.
He even managed to convert ardent baseball fan Jordan into a football fan, so much so that Mike claimed it was her idea to come and visit Wigan during their honeymoon.
“She’s a big fan of beaches and warm weather, so I assumed that’s what she’d want to do,” he said.
“When she said ‘England’, I was 100 per cent on board about coming. Since I was a kid I had always wanted to come here.”
Mike convinced Jordan to take a detour up North during their stay in London, so that they could finally see the club in action on home soil.
But the journey does not stop there for the couple. They’ll also be watching the team’s away game against Sheffield United this weekend - a tie even more hotly anticipated by Mike.
“As great as it was to go to the DW, I’ve been told that away games are much more fun that home matches, so I am pretty excited to see an away match.”
Back in February, fellow overseas Latics fan Will Jones travelled from his home in Utah to watch the club play Bristol Rovers, only to discover the match had been postponed due to cold weather, just moments after he landed in the UK!