Paul Cook has assured Wigan Athletic’s supporters what he says about his players in public is not necessarily the same message he delivers behind the scenes.
Despite a run of only one win in the last nine matches, Cook has refused to be anything other than positive.
However, he says fans shouldn’t be fooled into thinking he sugar-coats what he says to the players in private.
“I’m not a manager who will ever criticise my players in public,” he said.
“But make no mistake, I will be behind closed doors.
“I’m not a manager who will say everything’s great when it’s not.
“There will be harsh words when there need to be.
“But the first people who ever realise things aren’t going well are the people involved.
“Players and managers don’t want to be on a bad run.
“But unfortunately we are we are – and it’s our job to get us out of it.”
Cook expects this weekend’s opponents Birmingham to provide a stiff test of Wigan’s impressive home record, which has seen them lose only twice at the DW all season.
“They’re a very difficult team to beat,” he added.
“They’re in a fantastic position and we know they’ll be a very live threat, that’s for sure.”