Stanley boss has experience of Latics hell

Kal NaismithKal Naismith
Kal Naismith
Accrington Stanley boss John Coleman admits he knows exactly how everyone connected to Wigan Athletic is feeling - having been there and bought the t-shirt himself.

Latics host Stanley this weekend looking to build on last weekend's victory at Sunderland and move off the foot of League One.

It's a far cry from six months ago, when Latics were in the middle of a fantastic run that would see them finish the season mid-table in the Championship - before a 12-point deduction for being placed into administration saw them relegated.

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Having been at Accrington in 2011, when the club was close to being wound-up over an unpaid tax bill, Stanley is full of sympathy for this weekend's opponents.

“Going back years, nine years ago, you are fearing the club is going to fold," he said. "You are having to try and manage the players when you don’t know if they are going to get paid or not and it’s difficult.

“For Leam (Richardson) and Gregor (Rioch) to keep them going the way they have done, it’s all credit to them.

“I have watched a lot of Wigan and, if you see the games, they get beat by the odd goal and they have been quite unfortunate on numerous occasions.

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“They have got good players, they have got a blend of youth, they have one of the better academies coming through, and players have been thrust into first team roles and some have embraced it.”

Also involved in the Latics coaching staff this season is Under-18s coach Peter Murphy, who enjoyed a six-year spell with Stanley during his playing career.

“I speak to Peter and play golf with him now and again,” added Coleman. “He is a great lad, he did absolutely wonderful for Accrington, and epitomises what this club is all about.

“We got every last drop out of his career, unfortunately it was cut short with injury.

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"But he never left anything behind, he gave his all in every training session and replicated that when he went out onto the pitch.”

Coleman is also looking forward to catching up with Kal Naismith, another former Accrington player in the Latics ranks.

“I love Kal, he is a cracking lad, he has a great attitude and he was really good around the place," Coleman told the club's official website.

“I know he took a knock on Saturday so he might be doubtful. But he always gave me plenty of smiles.”

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