Wigan manager Gary Caldwell was left a frustrated a figure after the weekend’s game even though Latics continued their unbeaten start at home.
The 0-0 draw with second placed Walsall was made all the more difficult after Wigan captain Craig Morgan was shown his marching orders midway through the second half.
It didn’t appear that Morgan was the last man but the referee brandished a straight red and Wigan had to defend for their lives for the final 20 minutes.
And Caldwell’s frustration came from the lack of consistency from referee Andy Haines after he booked the Saddlers’ James O’Connor in an almost identical incident in the first-half.
“I have seen the red card back; it is very similar to the incident in the first half when we had a man brought down in the middle of the area and like us they had a man on the cover, they got a yellow, though, and we got a red,” Caldwell told the club website.
“We are finishing with ten men a lot recently and that is very frustrating.”
Caldwell reserved praise though for three Latics debutants following the draw with the Saddlers as Jussi Jaaskelainen, Yanic Wildschut and Donald Love all made their first Wigan Athletic appearances.
“I thought Yanic and Donald were excellent when they came on,” Caldwell said. “It was a difficult circumstance for both of them; they worked hard for the team.”
The two only arrived on Thursday and trained on Friday so a run out will surely be beneficial with a Johnstone’s Paint Trophy match at Crewe to come on Tuesday.
Jussi Jaaskelainen became the oldest ever league debutant for Wigan as he took position between the sticks.
The 40-year-old stopper thwarted the Saddlers on multiple occasions and produced a calm performance to help his side keep their first clean sheet for six games.
“Jussi was excellent too”, said the manager. “When we needed the composure and the calmness from the goalkeeper to kill the game, he used all his experience and it was a good clean sheet for him.”
Latics could have won it late on as Michael Jacobs was denied in the 90th minute when one-on-one with Walsall keeper Neil Etheridge and, though the point protects Caldwell’s side’s unbeaten run at home, he is keen for his side to win more games and accumulate more points.
“We are proud of our home record, we want to keep it going but we want to win games and we know in the last three games we have dropped points that we should have got.
“We will keep working hard now to try and turn these draws into victories.”
Image courtesy of Wigan Athletic via YouTube, with thanks.