Coyle is ‘not worried by league table’

Wigan Athletic manager Owen Coyle
Wigan Athletic manager Owen Coyle

OWEN Coyle insists he isn’t concerned about the gap between Wigan Athletic and their promotion rivals.

Latics are seven points behind a play-off spot and 13 points behind second placed Leicester going into today’s game against Huddersfield.

But the Wigan boss said: “We’ve still got another game in hand to play and the QPR game was our fourth game in 10 days so I’m not worried about gaps or whatever it is.

“What we need to be after 46 games is challenging to be back in the Premier League and that’s where we’ll be.

“We’ll combine that with the Europa and if anyone is sitting there and looking at the last three games, Blackpool away, Charlton away, it could very easily have been nine points as opposed to what it’s been.

“We follow the coverage of our convictions, the players trust each other, they trust themselves, and that will result in us winning games and moving up the league.”

While Latics’ defence has been solid and is the third best in the league, it’s the goalscoring which has cost them in a number of games.

With no goals in their last three league games, Wigan have been left kicking themselves after a number of missed chances.

Despite ruing his side’s luck, though, Coyle is taking the positives and firmly believes the luck will soon chance.

“We’ll be looking to pick up where we left off when we play Huddersfield, particularly with the second-half performance (against QPR),” he said.

“If we can keep creating the chances, the ball will end up in the net, there’s no doubt about that. It’s another big week for us – Huddersfield at home, Rubin Kazan away and then Yeovil away.

“But we feel we’re capable of picking up points from all of them, if not winning all three.

“We want to be at our best at Huddersfield and reward the fans, who have stuck with us throughout.”

Latics have another backlog of fixtures coming up with Europa League matches coupled with Championship games.

But that doesn’t faze Coyle, who believes his players are up for the challenge,

“The games are coming thick and fast but we have got the heart for the fight,” he said.

“We need to keep doing what we’re doing and I’m convinced we’ll get it right. This is not a team that is not creating chances - anyone can see that.

“On Wednesday night alone, Nick Powell forced a great save, Callum McManaman cut in and had a couple of great blocks, James McClean had a great chance, Chris McCann hit the post again, and we just have to trust each other that the goals will come.

“Then game by game we’ll start picking off these teams.”