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MANAGERS' VIEWS: HUGHTON AND CALDWELL

24 October 2016

The two managers reflect on Saturday's game.


CHRIS HUGHTON was delighted to record a ninth clean sheet of the season against Wigan Athletic on Saturday, and praised the overall defensive commitment from his team.

The Albion boss discussed the wealth of competition in central defence, but also highlighted the contribution of his players further up the pitch.

He said, “We’ve brought in Shane Duffy, who’s done very well for us so far, and at the moment, we’ve got four really good, competitive centre-halves.

“But you can’t have a back four that doesn’t have a team in front of them that are prepared to work both ways.

“The likes of Anthony Knockaert, who’s probably our most creative player, shows a good responsibility to get back into defensive positions.

“At the moment, we’re a team that are working really well for each other.”

Albion climbed into second position in the Sky Bet Championship with a 1-0 victory over the Latics, with Norwich losing at home to Preston, and Hughton looked ahead to next Saturday’s clash against the Canaries.

“It’s been a good day for us and there’s been a few good results, but you can only concentrate on yourself.

“The obvious significance of the game is that they’re a team who are very close to us, and any points that we get are points that they don’t get.

“It keeps us in there pushing, and it should be a very good game next week [v Norwich].”

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GARY CALDWELL felt his team paid the price for not making the most of their early dominance against the Seagulls, and thought Dale Stephens’s opening goal changed the atmosphere inside the DW Stadium.

The Latics enjoyed a positive start to the game and although they couldn’t find a breakthrough, Caldwell praised his team for their efforts, but urged them to show more confidence on the ball.

He said, “We’re very disappointed again; I felt up until their goal we played well and then after, I was a bit disappointed with how we played because we got a little bit anxious, the crowd did too and then our play went to pieces after that.

“Up until the goal, I couldn’t ask for much more other than that bit of belief from the players in their own ability.

“The players have to believe in themselves if they want to score a goal, and that was the only thing missing from the performance.”

Wigan sit in 23rd in the SkyBet Championship and Caldwell understands the frustration from the club’s fans, but insists their form can turn around with hard work and togetherness.

“The supporters have got to stick with the team; they have to support us in these times, it’s not easy for anyone and we’re all giving everything we’ve got.

“We’ve got to stick together and get through this run of not winning matches and not getting many breaks. We’ll keep working hard as a group and we will turn it around.”

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