‘Blackpool problems won’t affect us’

Blackpool fans protest against their club's owner Karl Oyston
Blackpool fans protest against their club's owner Karl Oyston

UWE Rosler isn’t bothered what is going on off the field at Blackpool.

He doesn’t believe it can, in any way, affect his team’s chances in today’s game so it’s not something he is worrying about.

The Tangerines are in turmoil at the minute, staring relegation in the face with fan protests against their owners.

But Rosler, in his usual steely and determined manner, insisted the only way Wigan will come out with three points today is if they stick to what they do best.

“We have nothing to do with the situation off the pitch at Blackpool,” he said. “It makes no difference for us, we are only focusing on us.

“We are giving Blackpool respect, what their fans do and how the situation is off the field is not my business.

“They have to win and we have to win, it’s as simple as that. When you are a boxer you can win the fight in the 12th round or lose the fight in the first round so there are different ways to win and lose.

“We have to make sure that after 95 minutes, because we always play five minutes extra at our stadium and I don’t know why, we win.”

Victory today would confirm a top six place for Latics.

Regardless though, Rosler wants to finish the season strong and uses that key word “momentum” when talking about going into the play-offs.

“We have three games to finish the season strong,” he said.

“Everybody should be focused because everybody knows what we are playing for and what we want to achieve and what is at stake.

“We want to go into the play-offs with good momentum and to get into the play-offs we need to win against Blackpool.

“We want to get momentum, it is important to finish the season strong and hopefully we can take that momentum into the play-offs.

“To finish the season strong we need to get results like we did against Reading and perform like we did against Arsenal but obviously not like we did against Burnley in the first half.

“We put ourselves into a play-off position very early on, when I felt it was very difficult to reach and I hoped we would sneak in at the last minute but we have been in there for a while.”

Rosler is wary of the threat Blackpool pose. They came away with a credible 1-1 draw from play-off hopefuls Brighton last week.

The Seasiders will also be cheered on by a sell-out away end with the Bloomfield Road club giving away free tickets and travel to 3,000 season ticket holders.

This is something that Rosler believes will actually help his players though

“I think for us it’s good,” he insisted. “When it’s a full stadium it will inspire my players.

“This group of players are used to playing in front of big crowds, it can only be good for us.

“Our supporters have been tremendous since I came to the club. I know they will be very vocal like they were against Reading and on many other occasions. For us it’s just a welcome atmosphere that we relish.

“Blackpool are a good side. Brighton, who have good technical players, found it extremely difficult to break them down.

“They have good transition, they work extremely hard. We have a lot to play for as well, I think we will have a lot of the ball.

“We need quality in and around the final third. We know we have players who can unlock the door and we have to show the right mentality because the ball will come into the box from the side, it will be around the box for shots and blocks and we need to show the hunger and the mentality to score goals.”