Wigan Athletic have come through 'mental' test, admits goal hero
Man-of-the-moment Jamal Lowe is hoping Wigan Athletic have ‘broken the cycle’ of late heartache – in time to fight their way out of relegation trouble.
The summer signing from Portsmouth had netted only once this term, heading into Tuesday’s must-win clash against Sheffield Wednesday at the DW.
But after nodding home a last-minute winner – which saw Latics close the gap to safety to just three points, with 17 matches still remaining – Lowe is hoping a corner has been turned.
“It was a lovely feeling at the end of the game, because far too often we’ve been the victim of those last-minute goals, and even later,” he told the Wigan Post.
“It’s been a feature of the season, losing late goals, and it’s been a very hard cycle to break.
"Hopefully the win on Tuesday can do that, because we showed we can hold them out and force a late goal ourselves.
“It’s all about having that mental strength to keep going.
“This season’s been a massive learning curve for us, and some of the things that have happened...we have to make sure they don’t happen again.
“Sometimes you have to go through the hard times to be able to learn from it and come out the other side.”
Lowe was one of Paul Cook’s marquee summer signings, with Latics chasing him for months before finally getting their man just before the transfer deadline.
His only previous goal had also secured all three points – Wigan’s last home win against Nottingham Forest on October 20 – and he admits the relief was palpable.
Of his inspired back-header, which flew into the roof of the net, he said: “It was pure instinct, I didn’t have time to think about it.
“It was either sink or swim and thankfully it was swim.
“Seeing the ball go in...it’s the best feeling in the world to score a goal and to win a game.
“For both of those to happen – especially coming from behind, in the last minute – it’s a great feeling.
“As a forward, I want to be scoring every week, and it’s just not happened this year.
“For me, it’s about proving I can score goals at this level, and helping this club to compete at this level.”