Fleetwood Town manager Uwe Rosler insists he doesn’t have a point to prove ahead of his first return to Wigan since being sacked as Latics boss in November 2014.
The German paid a high price for a poor start to the 2014/15 campaign, with Latics languishing in the bottom three in the Championship, despite being the pre-season favourites for promotion.
It was a remarkable fall from grace given the events of the previous campaign, when Rosler had turned things around after replacing Owen Coyle in December, leading Latics to both the play-offs – where they lost to QPR – and to the semi-finals of the FA Cup final, when they bowed out to Arsenal on penalties.
Yet it’s a spell of which Rosler, rightly, remains proud.
“There is no point to go back now and say how I feel,” he recognised.
“I had a win percentage of 43 in the Championship with Wigan, and that is all I can say.
“That is quite good when you compare it with others.
“It will be the first time I have been back there, so it will be special. But the scars have healed, so no problem.”
When asked if he had a point to prove, Rosler was philosophical.
“I think I have a point to prove in terms that we want to win the game,” he replied.
“But I don’t have a point to prove to anyone at Wigan.
“I have a point to prove to myself, to my chairman and to our supporters that we are going there and give a right good go. There are no bad feelings, no revenge, or anything on my agenda.
“My pure focus is to prepare my team as best as possible, give them the confidence to hit the high notes again, and that we go out and really have a right good go.
“That will make me very happy and very proud, and when we achieve that I think we have a good chance to get something out of the game.”
That said, Rosler knows it will be a tough day at the office against Paul Cook’s League One leaders.
“I address it as a challenge, against a very good footballing side,” Rosler acknowledged. “And I am really looking forward to the game.
“I have tried to figure out how we can cause them problems, and I am optimistic we can do that.
“It will be a great challenge for the players, for the coaches, and obviously going back there is special for me.”
He is also looking forward to locking horns with Cook in the technical area.
“Cooky has a track record of winning promotion, he did it last year with Portsmouth, and he has gone in to a club with probably the best budget after Blackburn,” assessed Rosler. “But he made some very astute signings and made changes in and around the club.
“They are improving and going in the right direction, they are where they want to be, where they have to be, and for me they are one of the main favourites to win automatic promotion.”
Opposite number Cook admits he is stepping into the unknown against one of his predecessors in the Latics hotseat.
“I’ve never met Uwe or had any sort of dealings with him,” Cook revealed. “Uwe can’t possibly dislike me...because he doesn’t know me!
“Football’s football though, and Uwe will want to win desperately, as will we.
“But certainly after the game we’ll have a beer together and wish each other well.
“It’ll be nice for Uwe coming back to Wigan, and I’m sure he’ll get a good reception.
“Obviously with their achievements last year, I think they’ll be hoping for something similar this year.
“They play a certain brand of football, they have players on the pitch who have lots of pace and energy who can hurt you for sure.
“I know we’ll have a go, and I’d imagine they will. Uwe will come with the mindset of wanting to win.”