Wigan Athletic boss Leam Richardson predicting "fantastic" derby with Bolton Wanderers

Leam Richardson is hoping Wigan Athletic's feelgood factor rolls into tomorrow night's derby.

Monday, 23rd August 2021, 12:47 pm
Updated Monday, 23rd August 2021, 12:48 pm
Max Power celebrates at Chalton

A bumper crowd is expected at the DW Stadium for the visit of Bolton Wanderers in a Carabao Cup tie.

The encounter has been made even tastier by James McClean's claim he snubbed a move to Bolton in favour of Wigan, which was denied by manager Ian Evatt.

Richardson, who played for Wanderers from 2000 to 2003, said: "We just want to give a good account of ourselves.

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"It's two fantastic football clubs - I've been very fortunate to experience both the clubs in playing for one and managing the other one.

"There are some fantastic people at both clubs and it'll be a fantastic spectacle for both sets of supporters."

Latics head into the match on the back of a 2-0 victory at Charlton on Saturday. Before that, they drew with Wycombe and beat Rotherham - two sides tipped to make promotion pushes - but Richardson is keeping grounded, despite the bright start.

"We're not getting carried away," he said. "We know where we've been and we're very aware of where we were 10, 12 weeks ago with three or four players.

"We've got fantastic owners now, we've got a CEO in Mal Brannigan who's brought a real positive energy and brought some really good people, as in staff, to the football club and some real quality to the playing staff.

"If we continue to do that, we'll make forward steps as a football club again."

He believes the feelgood factor - with the recent #believe campaign, the visit of chairman Talal Al Hammad and the capture of McClean - has rubbed off on the players.

"They've seen certain lads come is early and us dripfeeding players in and they can see the football club building again," added Richardson.

"It’s up to them to represent the shirt, to represent themselves and being an elite athlete, it’s my pressure to get them in the team. It’s their pressure to stay fit, to be ready and set the standards to follow through.

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"I’ve been fortunate enough to work at some fantastic football clubs and I’ve been fortunate enough to know what success looks like on a Saturday or a Tuesday and possibly at the end of the season.

"We’re still right at the beginning of our journey so more days like will help and the harder you work the luckier you get."