Shaun Maloney 'chuffed' for milestone goalscorer as Wigan Athletic chief reacts to EFL Trophy progression

Wigan Athletic boss Shaun Maloney praised the performance of goalscorer Jonny Smith following the 2-0 victory over League Two leaders Stockport County in the Bristol Street Motors Trophy.
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The triumph sees Latics into the round of 16 and a step closer to Wembley, while Smith celebrated a personal milestone in the home win.

Named as one of eight changes made by Maloney following the FA Cup victory over York last Friday, Smith scored his first goal for the club, while returning defender Liam Morrison slotted home the second to secure a spot in the next stage.

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“I loved the way that the team played in the first half and I thought Jonny Smith was really good,” Maloney said.

Jonny Smith scored his first goal for the club in the 2-0 EFL Trophy victoryJonny Smith scored his first goal for the club in the 2-0 EFL Trophy victory
Jonny Smith scored his first goal for the club in the 2-0 EFL Trophy victory

“I was really chuffed for him that he scored.

“It’s been really difficult for him because some of our wingers have been in brilliant form, so he’s had to be patient which is hard.

“But he’s been training really well over the last week, 10 days, so I’m really chuffed for him.

“He’s got a brilliant profile with that left foot, so I’m pleased for him and he needs to recover and get ready for the next one.”

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The two goals before the break proved to be an unassailable lead, with Maloney pleased to see how his side reacted to a contrasting second half, with Stockport pushing hard to get back into the game.

“I think the first half was really good from us, as good a level as we’ve played all season,” he continued.

“We’ve had spells like that in other games and I thought we were really good.

"Then in the second half, we had to show a different side.

"They had a lot of the ball and we had to limit their chances.

“Stockport are a good side, they’re flying in their league.

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“Although I would have liked more of the ball in the second half, I was actually really pleased that we didn’t give up too many opportunities.

"We’ve taken this competition seriously from the start and I think both sides did tonight.

"As a club, we desperately wanted to get to the next round.”

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