Wigan Athletic squad heading to Dubai ahead of the final push

Paul Cook during the 0-0 draw against Stoke
Paul Cook during the 0-0 draw against Stoke

Paul Cook will take his Wigan Athletic squad away to Dubai for a few days over the upcoming blank weekend, safe in the knowledge their Championship fate ‘remains very much in our own hands’.

The 0-0 draw against Stoke City on Wednesday night means Latics are a healthy six points above the drop zone with 14 matches to play.

That deficit could well be cut this weekend, with Latics without a game due to scheduled opponents Derby County being involved in the FA Cup.

But Cook and his squad will be around 3,500 miles away from the north west, on a short trip designed to get in some quality training as well as some much-needed rest and recuperation.

“We’re going to get away for a few days, the club’s managed to secure us a warm-weather training camp,” revealed the Latics boss.

“We’ve got a friendly game arranged for Saturday, where some of the lads who haven’t been playing will be able to get on the field.

“There will also be a chance for a game of golf and a swim for those lads who have been playing most of the games during a tough season.

“We’ll be back Monday, and hopefully in great shape for a good week’s training ahead of a big game against Ipswich next weekend.

“We have most of the teams in and around us still to play, most at the DW, and our fate remains very much in our own hands.

“As a manager you wouldn’t want it any other way.”

Latics will jet out having picked up a decent point against Stoke, making it three games unbeaten for only the second time this term.

“It was a tough game, for both teams, and I thought a draw was a fair result,” acknowledged the Latics chief.

“There were spells in the game when both teams tried to gain control, without either really managing to do that.

“Stoke certainly carry a threat, with the calibre of player they have, it’s evident for all to see.

“The game was just lacking that moment of magic from either team that would have won it.

“But all in all we’ll take the point, every point in this league is gold.

“We’ve put ourselves in a position now where we can achieve what we wanted to at the start of the season.”