Caldwell’s ‘shoot on sight’ policy does the trick

Gary Caldwell watches on as Latics crush Chesterfield
Gary Caldwell watches on as Latics crush Chesterfield

GARY Caldwell has revealed the secret behind Wigan Athletic’s recent goal-fest – a ‘shoot on sight’ policy.

Latics saw off Chesterfield 3-1 at the weekend to move up to joint-fourth in the League One table, four points off the automatic promotion places.

We couldn’t train as a group on Thursday because they were still recovering from the game on Tuesday nigh

Gary Caldwell

It was the third time in a row they’d hit three goals at home games over a nine-day period that has acted as a reminder of the undoubted attacking quality they possess.

The first two goals against the Spireites were right out of the top drawer, Max Power rifling a right-foot effort from 25 yards into the top corner before Reece James did likewise with

his left foot just before the break. And Caldwell admitted the two fresh contenders for goal of the season were not exactly a coincidence.

“It’s something we actually spoke about a few weeks ago, about trying to score more goals from outside the box,” the Wigan boss revealed.

“We hadn’t scored a lot, but with people like Max

I thought we had the quality.

“I said to Reece that he needed to look at Chris McCann’s performance against Sheffield United on Tuesday night – how he gets into the box and has more attacking intent than Reece has had in recent weeks.

“Reece took that on board, he got himself in and around the box and was rewarded with a fantastic goal.

“It’ll be great for his confidence and for his belief.

“He’s a player of massive potential, and he needs to believe in himself a little bit more. With goals like that, hopefully it can start to have an effect on him.”

Caldwell was also pleased with the contribution of Reece Wabara, who slotted in effortlessly at right wing-back just 48 hours after penning a short-term deal until the end of the season.

“I thought Reece did well considering he’s not had a lot of time with the group,” Caldwell enthused.

“We couldn’t train as a group on Thursday because they were still recovering from the game on Tuesday night.

“Considering he’s only had two training sessions, and playing in a position he’s not really been playing of late, I thought he did very well.

“He’ll improve from that game and also as a result of training with the rest of the group.”

The victory was even more impressive given it came without McCann and Will Grigg, who were late injury cry-offs.

“Will has a small hip flexor strain,” Caldwell reported.

“He should be pretty close for Saturday, it’s nothing serious.

“Chris has a cracked toe.

“This weekend would have been risky, but hopefully by next weekend he’ll be fine.”