The list of former players who’ve returned to haunt Wigan Athletic by scoring against them is very long.
But Latics boss Paul Cook insists he won’t be making any extra provisions to prevent Ivan Toney – who was a target for the Wigan boo boys during the first half of the season before being recalled from his loan by Newcastle – haunting his old club this weekend when Scunthorpe visit the DW.
“I don’t fear playing against anyone, I genuinely don’t,” Cook revealed. “For me, it’s about having belief in your players, and what we do well.
“As far as Ivan’s concerned, I can’t speak highly enough of him. He’s a lovely lad, a pleasure to work with, and he never ever caused us a problem.
“But with the one up front system, it was always either Ivan or Will Grigg, who has managed to sustain a run of goals. Ivan obviously wanted to play more regularly, and we wish him well.
“We will be wary of him, but certainly not scared.”
Latics are hoping to cut the six-point gap to League One leaders Blackburn, and Cook admits it still irks him to see someone else on top of the pile.
“If we hadn’t had the FA Cup run, I genuinely still feel we would be top of the league,” added Cook.
“Psychologically, we’ve allowed Blackburn to get ahead – through no fault of our own.”
Cook, who revealed last weekend’s referee, Geoff Eltringham, has apologised to him for not spotting a foul in the lead-up to Blackburn’s second goal in the 2-2 draw at Ewood, also saw the funny side of Tony Mowbray’s assertion his side’s goals were ‘brilliant’ and Wigan’s were ‘scrappy’.
“Tony’s a lovely guy and an excellent manager,” added the Latics boss. “And every manager should be allowed to say whatever they think.
“If Tony genuinely believes that, then good luck to him.
“We got beat the other week by Blackpool, to two horrible goals...disgusting goals!
“But they’re goals, and they all count the same. We’d all like to score the perfect goal, but it isn’t always possible.”