Wigan Athletic manager reacts to Oxford United draw
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The visitors were good value for their early lead through Matty Taylor, who fired home to complete a magnificent team move that started by their left-hand corner flag.
But a formation change from Richardson helped Latics recover a foothold in the game, with Callum Lang levelling nine minutes before the break.
After that, Latics looked the more likely winners, with Jack Whatmough hitting the woodwork and Josh Magennis having a goal disallowed for offside on his home debut.
All of which left Richardson with a glass half-full afterwards.
"Our lads are full of character, and we're playing against a really good team," he assessed.
"They're very well coached and, in my opinion, probably a top four team in the division.
"They bring a real threat to you, and they started the game really well for 20 minutes.
"To be fair to our lads, and the honesty they showed, we took back control of the game.
"I thought our distances were a little bit indifferent, and we saw a few things on the pitch we wanted to tinker with.
"The lads responded well, we put more than 20 crosses in there, and probably the only disappointing thing was we didn't manage to get the win in the end.
"But having taken four points off a top-four team, in my opinion that's a positive."
Latics have slipped three points behind leaders Rotherham, albeit with two games still in hand.
But their buffer to third-placed Sunderland is now two points, with Latics having played three games fewer.
"With the fixture list we've got, it's a massive challenge for myself and the staff to make sure we prepare and regenerate as much as we can for every game," Richardson added.
"The challenge every footballer has is they have to peak sometimes twice a week.
"Our challenge between now and the end of the season is to peak every three days.
"And I've every confidence that the lads will get every bit as much help as we can give them to help them be as good and as strong as they can be.
"As you saw again, when we play with that kind of intensity, we can go toe to toe with most teams and, with the quality we have, fall the right side of the result most times."
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