GAETAN Bong says Wigan Athletic are prepared to go to war seven times as they fight to hang on to their Championship status.
Latics have only seven games to save themselves from the ignominy of relegation to League One, less than two years after lifting the FA Cup at Wembley.
It’s getting tight now, and we have only seven games to make up the points we need. Every game will be like a war – and only if we look at it this way can we do itGaetan Bong
It’s been a dramatic fall from grace, but they still have time to rescue a catastrophic campaign – and claw back a five-point gap to safety – over the coming weeks.
Next up on Good Friday is a tough trip to Middlesbrough, who are going all-out for promotion to the top flight after six seasons in the second tier.
With livelihoods on the line, Bong knows it’s time for Latics to collectively roll up their sleeves and fight for every point in the desperate battle to avoid the drop.
“It’s getting tight now, and we have only seven games to make up the points we need,” Bong told the Evening Post.
“Every game will be like a war – and only if we look at it this way can we do it.
“The last seven games will be important for the team, the players and the fans, because it will be very intense, with a lot of stress.
“But this is football – and for this reason we love football, and we enjoy the game.”
Bong, who joined Latics in January after parting company with Greek giants Olympiakos, admits the challenge of keeping his new side in the Championship is one he’s thriving on.
“This is why I came to Wigan, I needed this,” the 26-year-old acknowledged.
“I enjoy the sensation of always going at it 100 per cent, and I have been giving my maximum and my best.
“We have a good team full of good players, and everybody is ready to try to win the rest of our games and get as many points as we need to get out of trouble.
“We are trying to play good football, although it hasn’t always been easy because of the pitch at home.
“In the situation we are in, we maybe need to be more simple – because we need to pick up points.”
The former Cameroon international – who has played the last seven games at left-back – admits the international break may have come at the perfect time for Latics ahead of the run-in.
“I think it’s been a good time to relax a little bit, because after the international break we have to start to cut away at the points difference between ourselves and Rotherham,” he added.
“We have played a lot of games in a short space of time, and we needed to recover before the last block of games in the league.”