Mackay confirmed as Wigan Athletic boss

MALKY Mackay has been confirmed as the new Wigan Athletic manager and aims to take the club back to the Premier League.

Dave Whelan said the 42-year-old was ‘overwhelmingly the outstanding candidate’ for the position, following the sacking of Uwe Rosler.

Wigan Athletic Chairman Dave Whelan with new manager Malky Mackay

Wigan Athletic Chairman Dave Whelan with new manager Malky Mackay

Mackay will be unveiled at a press conference this evening.

Whelan said: “He is the man to lead us back into the Premier League, I am convinced of that having met him and discussed the demands of the job ahead of him.

“He has led a team out of the Championship before and he knows this league inside out having played and managed in it. His achievements at Cardiff City were magnificent and we need a strong leader who will command the respect of a very experienced and talented dressing room – and he is the man to do it. I am delighted we have secured the services of someone who has so much to give to the game.“

There has been a lot of controversy surrounding Mackay in recent months with leaks of racist, homophobic and sexist text messages allegedly sent by the Scot.

On this, Whelan said: “I know that this appointment will draw criticism in some quarters but we go into it with our eyes open and we have nothing to hide on this subject.

“Malky made a mistake, he knows that, we know that and we have discussed this issue at length face to face. He apologised publicly for what happened at the time and has paid for what he did in terms of the bad publicity he has received since and will no doubt continue to suffer in the future.

“But I believe that it is now time to move on. Contrary to the way he has been portrayed in recent months, the Malky Mackay I met this week, and who has been vouched for by the many different people from whom we have sought advice before making this appointment, is an honourable man.

“He is a committed family man with decent values and is a professional who has worked and thrived for over 20 years in the multi-cultural world of modern football. There is nothing more to say about this subject, and as far as I am concerned we draw a line under it from today.”

Mackay said: “There’s quality in the dressing room and there’s some young talent coming through that is still to flourish and still to find their best football. It’s a squad of players that at the moment you wouldn’t relay with being in the bottom three so that’s the first thing - that we start to climb the table. Eventually we want to bring together a squad of players that can get promotion because that’s the be all and end all for the football club - to get back to Premier League.”