Paul Cook breaks his silence on why he resigned from Wigan Athletic

Paul Cook has spoken publicly for the first time since resigning as Latics manager - and revealed why he decided to quit.

Monday, 24th August 2020, 2:36 pm
Updated Monday, 24th August 2020, 2:38 pm
Ex-Latics manager Paul Cook

He left from his role as manager after the season finished, having led a daring bid to preserve their Championship status even with a 12-point deduction.

But a 1-1 draw against Fulham on the last day of the season, coupled with the points deduction, sealed their fate.

Cook admitted he was close to resigning two days before the Fulham game - the last of the season - after being informed a fee had been agreed by the administrators to sell Kieffer Moore to QPR, without his consent.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

"That was two days before the biggest game we were going to play, and Kieffer's head is turned. It should have been done after the season," he told TalkSport.

"On the flip side of that, I totally respect that the administrators have got a job to do.

"But when you're a manager and players are going to be sold without your consultation, the reality is you're not managing the club anymore."

The 53-year-old thought he had already secured their Championship status with a 3-0 win against Stoke City, just hours before he was informed the club had been placed into administration.

Recalling that night, he said: "There was a strange atmosphere around the stadium, from the chief executive and the executive chairman... everyone should have been happy, we kept our status with eight or nine games to go, and it was how much we could kick on.

"But there was a sombre mood and I got a call the next morning, asking could I come to the stadium.

"It was right away a hammer blow."

Latics' appeal to have their 12-point penalty for going into administration failed, condemning them to League One, but Cook was pleased the published judgement cleared the UK-based directors of any wrongdoing.

"It was pleasing chief executive Jonathan Jackson, Darren Royle and Joe Royle were exonerated from all problems, because nobody could do anything about it," he told the radio station today.

"No one had a chance. These guys were put into a horrific position. The owners, who were passed fit by the EFL... as a manager you think how can someone own the club for four weeks and then say 'no'? It's mind blowing."

A former promotion-winning manager at Portsmouth, Cook guided Latics to the 2017-18 League One title and then maintained their Championship status the following season.

He is keen to get back into football, adding: "I'm desperate to get back in."