SHAUN Wane admits he has been “taken aback” by some of the reaction to Warriors’ run of three defeats – saying it has felt like a funeral.
The proud Wiganer says several fans have wanted to speak to him since their 42-14 mauling at Castleford last Friday night – which followed slender losses to Brisbane and Hull KR.
People are pulling my missus over when she’s in the supermarket asking, ‘How is he?’ And they say to me things like, ‘I’m sure you’re doing OK, it’ll be all right’Shaun Wane
“The only way I can describe it is it’s like a massive funeral,” said Wane.
“People are pulling my missus over when she’s in the supermarket asking, ‘How is he?’ And they say to me things like, ‘I’m sure you’re doing OK, it’ll be all right.’
“I’ve been getting my head down and working hard to make sure we get a win so it doesn’t affect me – but I’ve been taken aback by some comments.”
Warriors are seventh in the embryonic Super League ladder, win one win and one draw from four rounds of the competition.
They tackle Hull FC this Friday night aiming to put their campaign firmly back on track.
Wane has made no excuses for their dismal performance at Castleford in their last outing. But he has urged fans to look at the bigger picture. “We’re always slow starters. We’re one point behind where we were at this time last year and we made the Grand Final, and we weren’t much better off the year before and we won the double,” he said.
“When Wigan lose, people get a lot more stressed than at any other club.”
Wane is burning the midnight oil as he tries to find ways to get his players back into the winning groove.
And while he knows critics will be sharpening their knives ahead of Friday’s home match against Hull FC – and the rugby league world will be keeping tabs on developments – he says he is not feeling any more pressure.
“Nobody in this country will put me under more pressure than I put myself,” he said.
“No matter what anyone says to me, I put myself under pressure so I don’t feel it externally.”
Wane will name his provisional 19-man squad this afternoon and expects to recall Joe Burgess.
The winger – dropped last week – could replace England flyer Josh Charnley, who described his performance against Castleford as “the worst I have ever played”.
He added: “I was appalled and embarrassed... it was absolutely shocking.”
Prop Ryan Sutton may come back into the reckoning but injured Dom Crosby may be beaten by the clock.
Hull’s Mickey Paea will miss Friday’s game with a one-match ban after admitting Grade B raising knees in a tackle against Leeds.