Wigan Athletic 4 Bury 1

Nick Powell
Nick Powell

Two goals from Nick Powell helped Wigan Athletic continue their 100 per cent record to the campaign with a convincing 4-1 victory over Bury at the DW Stadium.

Having been rested for the midweek League Cup win over Blackpool, Powell - the hero of last weekend’s 1-0 win at MK Dons - was restored to the starting XI.

And the ex-Manchester United man netted either side of the hour mark - the second one a penalty - to secure the spoils, after Michael Jacobs’ early goal had been cancelled out by Alex Bruce.

The icing was then applied to the cake in stoppage-time when Lee Evans picked his spot from 30 yards and lashed the ball into the top corner past Joe Murphy.

Paul Cook has now become the first Latics Football League manager to win his first three matches in charge.

And Latics moved up to third place in the fledgling League One table - one of only six clubs with a perfect six points from two league matches played.

Right from the off Latics were on it, with Jacobs opening the scoring inside 13 minutes.

Powell did all the donkey work down the left-hand side, with his slide-rule pass being slotted home with aplomb by the ‘Rothwell Ronaldo’.

However, as some of the home fans were still taking their seats following the applause, the visitors were back on level terms.

Latics were far too slow to react to a right-wing corner from Bury, allowing Bruce - who spent the second half of last term with Wigan, and only joined the Shakers this week on non-contract terms - to head home unopposed.

Two fine saves from goalkeeper Christian Walton prevented Bury taking the lead, as the home fans began to show a little unease for the first time this season.

But credit Latics for their response, and Powell’s header off a cross from Reece James - making his first start in 19 months - only cleared the bar by inches.

Left-back James had scored in his last outing, against Chesterfield in January 2016, before an ankle problem caused him to miss a season and a half.

And he threatened to repeat the trick moments later, only for his shot from inside the area to slice horribly off target.

Nice work from Jacobs saw him cut in from the left, but his shot was blocked at the expense of a corner, from which Powell headed straight at the Bury goalkeeper.

There followed a lovely, patient build-up from Latics, with the cross eventually coming in from Gavin Massey and put behind by a defender for a corner.

But the standing ovation from large parts of the home ends showed their appreciation for what their side was trying to do.

There was cause for concern just before the break when Powell was the victim of a crude lunge from Harry Bunn, who was immediately booked by the official.

Fortunately there was no lasting damage and Powell was able to continue.

And the Latics talisman exacted the perfect revenge within eight minutes of the restart, rising to head home an inviting cross from Evans.

Eleven minutes later it was 3-1, when Ivan Toney was rugby-tackled in the box by a Shakers defender, allowing Powell to send his penalty straight down the middle, and past the diving Joe Murphy.

Wigan’s strength in depth was shown in the last 15 minutes when Alex Gilbey, Ryan Colclough and Will Grigg took over from Powell, Massey and Toney.

But the changes didn’t do anything to halt the momentum, with Grigg coming close to netting twice, before Evans did find number four in added time, with a wonderful strike from distance.