Wigan Athletic boss reacts to shock Cambridge United defeat

Leam Richardson refused to blame tiredness or nerves for Wigan Athletic's shock home defeat to Cambridge United that blows open the League One title race.

Latics were off the pace for the majority of the game at the DW, with the visitors deservedly leading at half-time through Harvey Knibbs and Sam Smith.

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REPORT: Wigan Athleic 1 Cambridge United 2
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Tom Naylor pulled one back with 13 minutes to go, before visiting goalkeeper Dimitar Mitov pulled off a fantastic save in stoppage-time to deny Will Keane.

Will Keane is denied in stoppage-time

Despite being well below their best, the Latics boss didn't point the finger at the workload or the pressure involved.

"No I don't think so," he said. "The players have played in some very big games throughout the season, and in previous seasons.

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"Credit to Cambridge, they came here and I thought they were very productive, especially in the first half.

"As good as they were offensively in the first half, I thought they were good defensively in the second half.

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"It was probably a game of two halves, only they were able to take two of their chances, and we only managed to take one of ours.

"It's important we come to terms with the result quite quickly, because we've got four more games to come over the next fortnight."

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Richardson surprisingly opted to revert to a flat back four, with Graeme Shinnie and Gwion Edwards coming in for Jason Kerr and Joe Bennett.

Both Shinnie and Edwards were withdrawn at half-time – with Kerr and Tom Pearce coming on - allowing a formation switch to three centre-backs.

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But Richardson rejected the suggestion that the change in personnel and formation was to blame for the poor performance in the first half.

"No, not really," he added. "We were just trying to get more bodies into forward positions, more goals on the pitch, more intensity out there.

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"It could have been any two of them to be fair.

"It's probably the first whack we've received round the head for a long time, and I thought the lads reacted really well.

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"In the second half, I thought we were well worthy of something, but it wasn't to be."