Christian Walton admits he’s happy to continue his watching brief as long as Wigan Athletic keep up their promotion-winning form.
Latics entertain Charlton at the DW Stadium tonight looking to extend their lead at the top of League One to SEVEN points ahead of the weekend programme.
Walton is hoping to make it five clean sheets in a row since returning to the side after being out for three months with a broken leg.
Indeed, Wigan’s defensive strength has been such that the on-loan Brighton goalkeeper hasn’t even had a single shot on target to deal with during that time!
And having reached the midway point of the campaign with an impressive 52 points, Walton wants Latics to keep their foot on the accelerator – even if his only job is managing to keep warm.
“Obviously at the start of the year you always target winning promotion,” he told the Wigan Post.
“And being top of the league at the midway point is a big step towards doing that.
“With the squad we had we knew we should be up there in and around the top four, but it’s gone fantastic so far.
“The challenge now is to stay there, and we have to maintain the performances and the consistency we’ve shown.”
Latics will be red-hot favourites to see off the Addicks, who travel north in the midst of an injury crisis.
Karl Robinson’s men could be without as many as 17 first-teamers for the game, although Walton is not expecting an easy game against one of the teams fancied to be in the end-of-season shake-up.
On the back of the Boxing Day draw with second-placed Shrewsbury, Walton welcomes another chance for Latics to underline their own promotion credentials.
“It’s been a really challenging for Christmas for us – and I think it’s worked out well for us,” Walton acknowledged.
“It gets some big games out of the way in one go, and gives us scope to kick on in January and beyond.”
Meanwhile, Latics midfielder Jack Byrne is believed to be interesting SPL outfit Hearts.
The Irish midfielder has spent the first half of the campaign out on loan at League One rivals Oldham, where he has received rave reviews.
Latics are understood to be tracking Hearts midfielder Jamie Walker, who is out of contract next summer and can leave for free, and Byrne could be used as a makeweight in a January deal.