Wanted – Direction & Stability

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It’s not been a good month for Wigan Athletic. September drew to a close with three wins in a row and news of a takeover finally being agreed.

It seemed like things were finally looking up after a tumultuous few months, sadly this is Wigan Athletic we’re talking about and things are never that simple here are they?

On the pitch results have dried up, soon to be followed by performances.  The wins over Portsmouth and Doncaster feel a long time ago and although we’ve competed well in most games since then it’s been clear over the last week that we’re struggling.

Injuries are beginning to bite and that’s having a huge effect on us. The enforced 23 man squad may well be our downfall this season. Once you lose two or even three of John Sheridan’s preferred starting eleven at the team looks extremely threadbare.

We should have beaten Plymouth on Saturday, that despite us being distinctly average and second best in the first half. Second half was more like what we know and expect from the lads, and I had hoped that we would take that performance in to the game at Milton Keynes.

Anyone who watched Tuesday’s match will know that didn’t happen. Injuries again affected us with Kal Naismith, Will Keane, Viv Solomon, Darnell Johnson among those missing out at some point during the proceedings.

I think Tuesday confirmed what many of us had been thinking for the last couple of weeks that despite the squad we had managed to get together, this would still be a season of struggle for us.

The longer the takeover wrangles on the longer we’ll struggle like this. The aforementioned 23 man squad limit will stop us bringing in any reinforcements despite the lengthy injury list.

Speaking of the takeover we’re still none the wiser whether the bid by by Jose Miguel Garrido and the un-named Spanish investors will go ahead.

There have been concerning noises surrounding the takeover for the last couple of weeks. None more so than remaining staff at the club being offered a choice of a 30% salary cut or redundancy upon completion of the takeover.

Gerald Krasner spoke to the Wigan Post on Wednesday and said that the administrators were still on speaking terms with the bidders. That sounded ominous at best.

People were accused of scaremongering when this information came to light last weekend, and although I share the desperation for us to be taken over but it has to be right this time. It would be a huge mistake after the efforts to keep us alive over the last four months to not be vigilant now. Which takes us on to the EFL

As I write this on Thursday the EFL will be meeting with the bidders both UK and Spain based to work through the owners and directors test.  After the amount of valid criticism that was sent their way in the summer after failing to properly vet Next Leader Fund and Au Yeung they won’t be stung again.

If there is anything at all that is a red flag in this takeover it won’t be signed off. Thankfully it sounds like there are other bidders waiting to pounce if this does fail.

Whether it’s the Spanish or another bid Wigan Athletic are in desperate need of some direction and stability. Let’s hope either way things are decided sooner rather than later.

Sean Livesey

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