Waghorn: We need to put down a marker

Martyn Waghorn shoots against Blackburn
Martyn Waghorn shoots against Blackburn

MARTYN Waghorn says Latics will be going all-out to hammer home their advantage when the play-offs kick off on Friday.

Latics entertain QPR at the DW in the first-leg of their semi-final tie, ahead of Monday’s return fixture at Loftus Road.

Home advantage in the second leg is Rangers’ reward for finishing one place ahead of Latics in the regular season.

But Waghorn believes Latics can seize the initiative by taking advantage of home comforts first.

“It’s important to get off to a good start and I’m happy we’re home first,” he told the Evening Post.

“I’ve heard a lot of people saying it’s better to be away first, but anything can happen in that second game with the pressure on.

“If we can put a good performance in at home, in front of our fans and put down a marker, it would put us in a great position for the second leg.

“And we’re quietly confident we’ve got more than enough ability in the squad to cause them a lot of problems.”

A below-par start to the campaign meant automatic promotion was always out of Wigan’s reach.

But Waghorn says there is still time for Latics to achieve their goals for the season via the play-offs.

“It’s what the season’s all about, building up to the big games, and it doesn’t get any bigger than the play-offs,” Waghorn recognised.

“It won’t be easy but we’ve got a very good record against the top teams and that will give us a lot of confidence.

“We left it late to get into the play-offs, but we’re in there and we need to make it count – and QPR hold no fears for us.

“They’re obviously a good side with some good individual players, but we’re a very good team, we work hard and we’ll have a great game-plan.”

Tickets for Friday’s game remain on sale priced £20 adults, £15 OAPs and £10 juniors.