June 16, 2024

Reece Wabara believes Wigan Athletic are well equipped to deal with the pressure of a League One automatic promotion chase.

Speaking exclusively to AGL after Latics’ comprehensive 3-0 victory over Bury, the defender hailed an incredible opening 22 minutes which encompassed two goals from Will Grigg and one from Ryan Colclough.

“It was a great performance by the lads. We got an early goal and capitalised with two more very quick, which put the game at ease. I thought we were in control from that point, and hopefully we conserved a bit of legs going into Tuesday.

“The last two weeks have been brilliant in regards to results. There’s a lot of pressure on the final run-in, the last quarter of the season, so we’re all confident that we can keep winning. Spirits are high so we just focus on our job.

“I think it’s part of your job to deal with pressure, and everyone in the team is relatively experienced at this level, if not higher. So it’s just part of the game and the best players deal with that pressure.”

Saturday’s win opened up a four-point gap to third placed Gillingham and fourth placed Walsall, who have a game in hand on both Wigan and the Gills.

(c)WAFC/Bernard Platt
(c)WAFC/Bernard Platt

Of course, automatic promotion is what we all want…

And the former England youth international, who has impressed since joining the club in January, reckons his side have a great chance of winning the league outright.

“Second place is the minimum expectation but it would be nice to win the league. I think Burton are five points ahead now and we’ve got to play them, so if we stick to our job and keep working hard, there’s no reason we can’t get automatic promotion.”

“Of course, automatic promotion is what we all want – you get a bit of a longer summer as well! But no, everyone’s on the page to get automatic promotion and build for next season.”

Wabara also praised the home support, which was in good voice throughout an almost perfect afternoon at a jubilant DW Stadium.

“The fans have been excellent. The stadium’s been buzzing, and I think they’re appreciating the football we play. Sometimes we play possession football and at times it has frustrated them, but now they’ve come to see why we do it – it tires opponents, and apart from that Oldham game, we’ve been scoring free-flow.”

Latics, who currently hold the best goal difference in League One, will be seeking further comfortable victories as they enter ‘Mid Table March’. After visiting 5th placed Millwall on Tuesday night, Peterborough, Bradford, Swindon and Rochdale lie in wait. Sandwiched in between is a showdown with Colchester, who presently lie in 24th spot.

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