ROBERTO Martinez is adamant the future of Wigan Athletic remains bright – and insists relegation will not lead to a mass exodus.
Wigan play their final Premier League game against Aston Villa tomorrow after eight years among the big boys, with the vultures already circling the DW.
However, the Wigan boss has reiterated his long-held stance that any player sales will only be for the right reasons and when valuations have been met – and not out of necessity.
Martinez, whose own future is uncertain with reported interest from clubs at home and abroad, said: “Players that are under contract have an incredible value for our football club and in football in general.
“There’s not an issue unless there is an offer that matches our valuation.
“Then you need to sit down and maybe think about another year at the club could benefit yourself.
“Regarding the players that are under contract, there is no issue at all, they are focused.
“There is nothing to comment on regarding the players that are under contract unless there is a firm bid for any of them.
“At Wigan Athletic, we have never had the finances to spend money we haven’t got, but we don’t need the money to balance the books so nobody is going to leave on the cheap.
“That is not just now we have got relegated – that has always been the case.
“We have lost players before, but we always end up in a better position by investing that money and that has to be the same in years to come.
“The moment you accept it, you reinvest the money and you get ready to benefit from that.
“You are looking at the players and there are phenomenal assets in our squad, and you don’t get that when you get a team relegated. That’s again Wigan Athletic defying the odds, the first team winning the FA Cup and getting relegated.
“We never do things in a dull manner.”
James McCarthy has already attracted plenty of interest over the last few days.
But Martinez insists the Ireland midfielder’s departure is far from inevitable.
“James has got a long-term contract here,” Martinez added.
“He is such an incredible character, and what he needs to do is fulfil his potential.
“This season he has gone into a different level again.
“But I still feel he has got something else to learn from his experience at Wigan Athletic and being a very important player.”
However, Martinez did confirm that Latics will be bidding farewell to a number of players whose contracts expire this summer.
Antolin Alcaraz, Franco di Santo, Maynor Figueroa and Ronnie Stam will all move on to pastures new, while Joel Robles, Angelo Henriquez and Paul Scharner will return to their respective parent clubs after successful loan spells.