Five things we learned from QPR v Wigan Athletic

Greg Farrimond reflects on five talking points from Wigan Athletic’s weekend  of capital punishment at Loftus Road ...

Sunday, 25th August 2019, 10:46 pm
Updated Sunday, 25th August 2019, 11:46 pm
Nathan Byrne is sent flying at Loftus Road

1 When heads are going down, they’re staying down. It’s a sentence Paul Cook will hate to hear but it’s hard to argue against.Latics showed no fight in the second half of Saturday’s defeat, which made it all that harder to take. Once QPR took the game by the scruff of the neck, Latics never looked like wrestling it back and when they equalised it was all about when they’d take the lead. And then when they took the lead, it was all about when they’d extend it.

2 No matter what the formation, the Latics defence never looks comfortable. Whether it’s three, four or five at the back, there’s always that feeling of anxiety when the opposition has the ball in Wigan’s half. It’s a feeling that isn’t going away any time soon and with Cook already giving plenty game time to the main three, maybe it’s time on-loan Charlie Mulgrew had a shot at steadying the ship.

3 Paul Cook can bite his lip. Cook’s post-match press conference was one of his shortest yet. The Latics manager doesn’t like openly criticising his players and the only way he could avoid doing that on Saturday was by not speaking at all. Safe to say that the discussion with the players would not be as brief.

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4 Callum Lang is ready for the first team. OK, it wasn’t an ideal game to make his league debut and the 20-year-old didn’t make much of an impact... But with Latics not making much of an impression at either end of the pitch and changes needed, why not throw the youngster into the mix? His scoring record of one in three at Morecambe and Oldham shows he knows where the goal is.

5 Danny Fox can take a mean corner. It’s fair to say that defending isn’t Wigan’s strongest attribute right now but their centre-backs made a positive impact at the other end of the pitch at least. Cedric Kipre scored his first goal for the club in 44 appearances but it was after a superb corner by fellow defender Fox that created it... and it wasn’t a one-off. Each corner the 33-year-old took caused problems.