Callum Lang on new season goals at Wigan Athletic
Callum Lang has declared himself ‘fit and raring to go’ – for his first campaign as a senior figure with Wigan Athletic.
And the 22-year-old is determined to pick up where he left off last term, when his return from a loan spell at Motherwell coincided with a huge upturn in fortunes.
Lang’s form in pre-season – in a Latics side that won all five of their warm-up matches – certainly suggests he means business, which bodes well for the coming campaign.
“We’ve had a great pre-season to be fair, all the lads who’ve come in have gelled well,” he told the Wigan Post.
“We’ve bonded really well, we had a little week away in Scotland which was great, and I think it’s all looking very positive at the moment.
“Obviously it’s a lot different from where we were 12 months ago.
“Last year, we had a job to do, and the aim was a whole lot different to what it will be this season.
“But we managed to achieve our objectives then and, for the lads who are still here, it should give us confidence to take into the new season.
“Obviously we’ve got a lot of new players in, but there was a lot of confidence and momentum generated from last year that is still here.
“We’ve got a good enough squad, with a mixture of youth and experience, and I don’t think there’s any pressure on us.”
The summer signings of Charlie Wyke and Stephen Humphrys – in addition to the re-signing of Will Keane – means Leam Richardson will have an embarrassment of riches at the top end.
Not that Lang will be losing any sleep over the permutations.
“For any good side, you’ve got to have that competition for places,” he acknowledged.
“I can only speak for myself, but when you’re bringing in quality forward players as we have this summer, it only inspires you to work even harder to raise your own game.
“We’re all helping each other in that respect, we’re all pushing each other, and it bodes for an exciting season.”
First up for Latics is tomorrow’s trip to Sunderland, who are also expected to be up there challenging for promotion this term.
Lang, though, says Latics will have no fear at the Stadium of Light.
“When you look at the first few fixtures, they’re obviously very tough,” he recognised.
“But the league itself is going to be as tough as ever, and you’re going to have all these teams at some point.
“The first five games or so will be a good gauge of where we are, and hopefully we can take the energy and positivity from pre-season in there.”
He’s also added another string to his bow of late, in the shape of a magnificent free-kick – which proved to be the winner in last week’s final friendly against Preston.
“That was a first to be fair!” he smiled. “I’ve hit a few in training, and when I was pulled down, Max (Power) told me straight away to take it.
“I just had a go, and might have another few goes if that was anything to go by, I was made up with it!”
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