Gary Caldwell has welcomed Will Grigg and Northern Ireland reaching the last 16 at Euro 2016 – but doesn’t want them to go all the way to the final!
Northern Ireland have overcome the odds to reach the last 16, and face Wales tonight (kick-off 5pm) in Paris for a place in the last eight.
It’s been a frustrating time for Grigg on a personal note, as he waits for his first chance to impress off the bench. And with the Wigan Athletic players having already returned to pre-season training, Caldwell admits he would like his 28-goal top scorer back as soon as possible.
“It’s incredible for the whole country, and for Will to be involved in that at a major finals can only be good for him and his career,” said Caldwell.
“But we don’t want them to go too far – because of course we want him back as soon as possible, and working with his team-mates here!”
Despite his lack of minutes, Grigg has been arguably the most talked-about footballer in the tournament, with fans of all nations singing the famous ‘Will Grigg’s On Fire’.
It’s a chant that will be heard at Championship grounds up and down the country next term, and Caldwell says no-one at Wigan will ever get tired of hearing it.
“Not at all – I don’t think anyone in the world would ever get sick of that chant,” he smiled.
“For it to catch on and go global is great.
“And it’s great for the club that we can have that appeal not just to fans here but also around the world.”
Caldwell will also be speaking to Grigg ahead of the game to discuss how and when he will be integrated back into club football later this summer.
“We’re not sure about what’s happening, I’ll probably give him a call this week and speak to him, and see how he is,” added the Latics boss.
“We’ll discuss it with the medical team and decide from there what he needs in terms of rest and recovery.”