'Glutton for punishment' Charlie Wyke on relief at breaking Wigan Athletic duck
Charlie Wyke insists he’s happy to be a glutton for punishment as long as it means Wigan Athletic are reaping the rewards.
The big striker broke his scoring duck at Accrington on Saturday, at the seventh time of asking following his summer signing from Sunderland.
While his all-round contribution has been acknowledged and appreciated by team-mates, management and fans alike, he admits to feeling a huge sense of relief at getting off the mark.
“Obviously it’s a relief, and it’s been a long time coming,” Wyke said.
“I have been getting frustrated and, after the first half at Accrington, I thought it was going to be the same again.
“Thankfully I’ve got the goals now, and hopefully there’s more to come.
“Last season, I scored so many goals, it felt like every time I touched the ball it was going in.
“This year it’s not really fallen for me, apart from Saturday, so hopefully things have changed on the score.”
Boss Leam Richardson praised Wyke only last week, and predicted he would be among the top scorers in the division by the end of the campaign.
Wyke, though, prefers to let his goals do the talking.
“Obviously as a number nine, you want to be scoring as many goals as you can,” he said.
“It’s all right for people to be saying ‘it’s fine, you’re doing your bit for the team’, but you want to be the one getting on the end of crosses and scoring goals.
“I was pleased with my performance on Saturday, but to score a couple of goals was obviously massive for me.
“I have to say the fans have been brilliant with me since I’ve been here. They’ve shown a lot of patience, and that’s all you can ask for.
“I know it’s been frustrating for them as much as me, but hopefully that’s started to repay their belief in me.”
Wyke couldn’t have picked a better time to break his duck, with the 2,468 travelling Wiganers comfortably outnumbering the home support in the crowd of 4,517.
“I didn’t realise how many fans we’d be taking to Accrington,” he recognised.
“I was surprised when we came out and saw them all.
“You know right from the start it’s going to be a good day, with all that backing.
“Max (Power) even told me I’d get my first goals, so obviously he knew!
“My family were also in the crowd, I couldn’t really see them because of the amount of people.
“But it was nice they were able to see my first goals.”
The 28-year-old – who scored 31 times for Sunderland last term, before turning down a new deal to join Latics – certainly put in the hard yards at Accrington.
He was kicked from pillar to post by the home defence, and had two decent penalty shouts ignored before scoring goals three and four in the second half.
Not that he will be complaining in the slightest.
“Sometimes people have said they feel sorry for you because of the rough stuff,” he said.
“But I actually enjoy it, I enjoy getting smashed by defenders and getting stuck in.
“I’ll always put my hand up for that, I’ll always work hard, and it’s nice to get the rewards with goals.”
On the penalty shouts, he added: “I thought the first one in particular should have been a penalty.
“It didn’t really matter in the end, but if it had finished 0-0 we might have had something more to say.”
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