Wigan Athletic must 'dream big' to pull off survival, urges Maloney
Shaun Maloney says Wigan Athletic need to 'dream big' as they try to drag themselves away from the foot of the Championship table.
Latics host Coventry City at the DW on Tuesday night, aiming to overturn a six-point deficit to safety with only 10 matches remaining.
There's also the small matter of a three-point deduction looming after the club failed to pay the wages on time this month - for the fourth time this term.
Maloney, though, can only focus on matters on the field - and he's hopeful the players can help lift some of the gloom with a much-needed win.
“The group was very good in training today," he said.
"I sensed in that last half an hour against Burnley (on Saturday) that we had a mental strength I didn’t think was here 40 or so days ago.
"And we’re going to need every bit of that in the next couple of months."
Maloney looked like a broken man in the aftermath of the 3-0 defeat at Turf Moor, but he's signalled his intent to come out 'fighting'.
"The fans saw it was a very difficult 48 hours and they could see I was hurting," he acknowledged.
"From my point of view, I have to give the fans, my team and the staff the confidence that this is our fight.
“We are going to have to stand together because we need to dream big.
"From my point of view, we are at the very beginning of this rebuild, and whatever happens in the next two months, we are not going to walk away from that.
“The club stuck by me when I was going through difficult times, and this is a time where I’m standing by them, and we will stand together.
"I’m going to fight for the next two months - the players are going to fight and the fans - and it’s going to be the same until I’m told otherwise.
"I’m all in, and ready to go!"
Latics will be without the suspended Omar Rekik, who was sent off for two bookable offences at Burnley.
There is more optimistic news on Charlie Wyke, who may return to the fold after several weeks out.
“Everyone is okay apart from Omar, who will miss out through suspension," added the Latics boss..
“But I think Charlie Wyke is getting closer.
"He’s trained three times and I’ll make the decision on whether he is in the squad at the last moment."
Latics lost the corresponding fixture 2-0 back in November - which turned out to be Leam Richardson's last game in charge.
Despite the Sky Blues pushing for the play-offs, Maloney is confident Latics have it in them to get the job done.
“I have given them the ideas on how we are going to stop them and hurt them with what we can do," he said.
“They are a good team who have evolved.
"They have got really good attacking players, and they’ll come here and look to play, but it’s us to go and stop that.
“It’s up to us to hurt them when we have the ball.”