Following a 2-0 home defeat on Wednesday night, Wigan Athletic lie second from bottom of the Championship table with almost half of the season gone. Newcastle’s victory puts them top. Some billed it as the match between a £2 million minnow and a £100 million giant.
Despite at last including Will Grigg in the starting lineup, Warren Joyce remains a controversial choice as Latics manager. After 6 matches in charge his record reads W1 D1 L4, goals for 3, goals against 9.
Joyce continues to divide opinion among the Latics faithful. We took a look at the social media following last night’s match and came up with a wide range of views. Our thanks go to the Cockney Latic Forum, Vital Wigan – Latics Speyk Forum, The Boulevard of Broken Dreams (Facebook) and Twitter for providing the media for the posts below to happen. Thanks go to all whose contributions are identified below.
Stephen Warnock @ StephenWarnock3 tweeted:
1st half simply not good enough. Better 2nd but still not good enough.
Andrew Baker on the The Boulevard of Broken Dreams posted that:
I thought we were ok in spells last night. Disappointing that a mistake lead the first goal as I thought we looked good until they scored. I’m a bit concerned about how we reacted to going a goal down. We seemed to be all at sea, but then regrouped again after halftime. I thought Grigg was ok, for a guy who hasn’t played much football. Yanic looked the main threat again, but as always lacked the end quality.
Goodbrand Stats @StatsChristian tweeted:
#Wigan have set a new club record of 5 consecutive home league games without scoring. Barren. #wafc #LaticsStas
Paul Kendrick @PKendrickWIG tweeted
Two stats from tonight’s game: #wafc Shots on target: 1, shots off target: 9 #nufc: Shots on target: 8, shots off target: 1.
Dwdan on Latics Speyk commented that:
Not one Wigan player would get in the Newcastle team, but second half in particular I thought we put a real shift in and rattled them. Grigg looked lost first half, was better second half but still didn’t show that he can cut the mustard at this level in my view. Ipswich a must win match now I feel.
Mr Brownbill on the Cockney Latic Forum said:
They were dire…including Villa Saturday and up to Griggs header it was 158 mins without a shot on goal.Never seen passing as crap in years and caught in possession constantly. “Next 3 games are important” state the obvious why don’t you. ….the last 3 were too and nil goals ,nil points.The first half was painful to watch ,embarrassing at times and anyone who has watched us recently must be on the happy tabs if they can wrench any positives from that mound of tripe. Season so far is a pantomime form the pre-season recruiting to last night it has been a horror show and I for 1 cannot see this manager pulling us out of the bottom 3. All those who think the transfer window will come to the rescue then you really are straw clutching.
Craig Aspey @AS_caspey tweeted:
Having said all of that, thought tonight overall a better performance than seen this season so far. Beaten by a massively better team #wafc
Blupru on Latics Speyk was cautiously optimistic:
I was one of the first to slate WJ and in my opinion rightly so for the last few matches, however after watching tonight’s match I do feel there is a glimmer of hope he may turn it around. Very happy to see Grigg back and I thought the lads gave a brave account. Hopefully WJ has seen the way forward and now has a bit of belief.
Vincehill on the Cockney Latic Forum was not so hopeful:
Shades of the 2014-15 season however this team is poorer than that in my opinion. A total lack of ambition will send this club into oblivion if some serious team investment is not made in the new year.The rot set in in 2009 when we went from an established premier league outfit in the top ten to a club fighting relegation each season. Yes we won a major trophy in that time but the club has most certainly been in decline since then regardless of that. Last night was like watching schoolboys play their teachers and I realised then that regardless of manager (ridiculous decision sacking caldwelll btw) we have had it unless changes in playing personnel are made in January and the war chest brought out !
Andy Crowther on The Boulevard of Broken Dreams pointed out the tough opposition Latics have faced since Joyce’s arrival:
People what to sit back and take stock and realise who we played since Joyce took over and stop calling for his head and saying he has not got a clue. Barnsley scoring goals for fun we held them to nil nil away Huddersfield top 6 when played beat them away Derby Won 5 in row unlucky to lose 1-0. Villa away goal in 88 min lost us a point away perm last year Newcastle odds odd to go up prem last year yes they won 2-0 but until 2 second goal we was in game and might have got a draw next 5 or 6 game will decide how we will get on in league . Only game I not seen since Joyce took over is Villa and even game we improved since Barnsley. Tonight expected us to sit back whole of match like did at Huddersfield and think we got a point let hold it to nil nil but we did not with team selection we tried to make chances which we did but Grigg was 1/2 a yard of pace to get on end of crosses. Maybe not match fit or not good enough. But Newcastle are well odds on to win league and we made them look ordinary.. So next few games will decide how far we go on this league.
Viciousfinger on Latics Speyk speculated on why the results are not improving:
Lots of effort but no real plan of how to compete is how I’d describe it. Once again we didn’t get on the front foot aside from a 15 to 20 min spell in the second half. Can’t knock them for effort but something is lacking and I can’t decide whether it’s a lack of quality, a lack of a game plan or a bit of both. I do believe we have the players to hurt teams but there’s a little something missing right now.
The Otter on the Cockney Latics Forum referred to funding:
How odd. Earlier this season when people were calling for Caldwell to be sacked a lot of people said the extra money we had compared to the rest of the division was the reason we won the league and not the manager. Now we’ve got the 2nd lowest budget in the league it seems that the money spent by other massively wealthy clubs is irrelevant.
Philip Moss @mossylatic tweeted:
I fail to see a single benefit that the Caldwell sacking has had.. #wafc
JJ_WAFC on Latics Speyk offered a revealing insight into recent and future events:
…….some of you may or may not know I do actually have some contact with different people in the club and visit Euxton quite regularly and have been involved with a number of clubs all over Europe, ranging from coaches to board level so I like to think I have a decent understanding of our beautiful game and some of the well lies I have read on this forum from people apparently in the know is quite laughable.
Firstly get used to Warren Joyce he will be here on the first game of next season regardless of what division we are in, we have invested too much money into him to pay him off by being sacked and it was one of the provisos he took the job, the length of his contract for security. We are quickly being tied with the same brush as Leeds/wolves etc and we cannot afford to have managers in and out as we do need to pay them off.
The whole Will Grigg debate, the lad hasn’t been fit full stop he had a virus and lost quite a bit of weight doubled with lack of sleep due to being a new dad the lad has been bugg….ed in all honestly. I saw him training with my own eyes on Monday and I have never seen him as sharp, believe me what WJ is doing behind the scenes is hectic, he is running the lads into the ground building them up to a fitness level he expects. One of the funny things I did read on here was Grigg has no pace? Really? as in the 20m sprints in training he is one of the fastest players we have but hey you may know best. Will Grigg will play a massive part from now on and believe me I saw a lot of him in training last year and I if I had seen him as sharp as he is now I cannot remember it.
WJ will make changes in January but only by selling first, before criticism gets thrown at him juts look who 4 of his games were against 4 of the top 5 of the division. Those games wont define our season, the next 2 are huge. He looked for a way of beating the best sides in this league and it came good at Huddersfield and we lost against Derby, Villa and Newcastle 2 of those are some of the biggest sides in English football not just the championship with millions at their disposal.
I was very skeptical about the Caldwell sacking as I was one of his biggest advocates but seeing how things have changed recently I’m beginning to warm to Warren and his methods. Gary had no plan b and saw his way would win him games, the major thing Warren has for him is he adapts to each game and sets his side up the best way he feels can beat that side, you may be surprised how we set up against Ipswich is all I can say.
I will stick my neck out and say he WILL keep us up……
What a load of sh..e. Will Grigg may very well be one of the fastest sprinters over 20m, without the ball. With the ball he isn’t, simple as. Usain bolts the fastest 100m sprinter in the world, give him a ball and you’d be lucky if he’s faster than Morgan. The problem isn’t just a lack of pace, although that’s a contributing factor. We’re lobsided in terms of quality. Warnock, is by far our best defender, Wildschut out best winger and Perkins our best defensive midfielder. All 3 are either left sides or tend to drift to the left. Garbutt is awful (and a liability), Reece Burke is awful, Byrne is too small, Jacobs too slow (to play on the wing). So we’re left with our best offensive players on the left and our best defensive players on the left. It’s not just a matter of swapping their sides either, we’ve tried that and it did not work. Prime example, Dummett for Newcastle was shit. Wildschut had him on toast the first run he made, so what did we do after that, nothing! We left him alone up until Kellett decided to try his luck. Dummett is a player id be disappointed to sign for us, he’s awful. But he’s out on our shitty right side so he gets a free pass, whilst our stronger left is up against their far stronger right in Anita. We’re lobsided and predictable, we have one out ball to Wildschut and that’s it. Usain Grigg isn’t charging us up the field is he. For the love of all mankind buy/loan some right sided players in January, a bit of pace and some CBs who can defend. That’s only the second game this season we’ve lost by more than 1 goal, so we’re really not that far behind, a bit of luck, less mistakes, better defending and we can turn 1 goal losses into draws and better. Don’t buy s..t for the sake of it. I don’t want 20 new sh…y offcasts id rather 2-3 specific players that’ll do the job!
I agree with the view that Caldwell had no plan B, but I’m yet to see a plan A from Joyce. The lacklustre body language and seemingly non-existent tactics are the most worrying aspects. He seems unaware of players positions and when a style of play does emerge from the dross it emerges despite his tactics rather than because of them. He has worrying shades of Malky Mackay about him.
Yes we’ve played top teams but we haven’t made an attempt to win those games, rather focusing on not losing them. This timid, negative approach means the chance of a win is more dependent on luck than on matters you can influence.