CHRIS McCann has called on Wigan Athletic to rediscover their killer instinct in front of goal – and prevent precious points slipping through their fingers.
Latics’ misery continued at the weekend with a 2-1 defeat at struggling Sheffield Wednesday.
Despite dominating the majority of the game, Latics paid a high price for their profligacy in front of goal to remain rooted in the Championship drop zone.
Latics are now two points adrift of 21st-placed Rotherham, having won only three or their 19 league games - only crisis club Blackpool have won fewer.
But McCann insists he has seen enough reasons for optimism in recent weeks - if the side can locate their collective shooting boots.
“If you look at the chances we created, I don’t think there’s any way we should have lost the game, we could have won it two or three times over,” McCann told the Evening Post.
“We had five or six, maybe seven or eight, great chances and we’ve got to be more clinical and more ruthless in front of goal.
“We can’t keep going on, game after game, saying we’ll be all right.
“We need to start putting results on the board and points on the board.
“I don’t think the performances are all that bad at the moment.
“We just need to work on our finishing, and make sure that if the chances are created next week we’re able to finish them off.”
The performance of McCann was arguably the biggest positive for Latics at Hillsborough.
Having recovered from a shattered kneecap sustained in the FA Cup victory at Manchester City back in March, McCann completed his second 90 minutes in a row – capped with a fine first-half header to give Latics a deserved advantage.
“I’m delighted to be back and out there on the pitch,” the Irishman added.
“Anyone will tell you that when you’re injured it’s never nice seeing your team-mates out there every week without you.
“Watching the games, you find yourself wondering whether you could be affecting the game.
“I wasn’t expecting to be playing 90 minutes right from the off, but hopefully I can keep pushing on and keep improving every week.”
McCann was also delighted to be joined in the engine room by Ben Watson, who has reported no after-effects from his own comeback following nine months out with a badly-broken leg.
“It was great to have Ben back as well, everyone knows the quality he’s got and what he brings,” McCann added.