‘Ready to bounce back’: Roberto Martinez confident of Wigan Athletic response despite survival body-blow

By Matt Simpson

Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez wants his team to bounce back in their final games after they succumbed to defeat against Swansea City at the DW Stadium.

Roger Espinoza and James McCarthy twice put the hosts ahead but the visitors hit back through Angel Rangel, Itay Schechter and Dwight Tiendalli to seal the comeback.

The result edges the Latics closer to the Premier League trapdoor but Martinez, in his 150th game in charge, said there are still two games left to play.

“The team is ready to bounce back and make sure we take the opportunities over the final two games,” he told Sky Sports.

“What we must do is make sure we get ready for the next two games that we have got in the league and make sure we get everyone as recovered as we can.

“We have got incredible character and we are determined to fight for every single point that is left.”

Wigan took the lead on the stroke of half-time when Espinoza volleyed home after Swans keeper Michel Vorm – who was later stretchered off – punched the ball straight to him.

Rangel restored parity five minutes into the second-half, applying a neat one-touch finish to Wayne Routledge’s cross to stun the home crowd.

Almost immediately, the Latics regained the lead when Gary Caldwell weighted his pass perfectly into the path of McCarthy who drove a low shot past Vorm.

But approaching the hour, Swansea equalised again – albeit somewhat fortuitously – when Schechter’s shot took a deflection on its way into the net.

The visitors then delivered the hammer blow which could send the Latics down when Tiendalli scuffed the ball in with 11 minutes left after the home defence failed to clear.

The Spaniard was disappointed with the manner in which his side conceded, but praised the effort of his players and is determined they will learn ahead of their final games.

“We conceded sloppy goals with bad decisions,” he added. “We have so many injuries at the back and today that showed too much.

“That is very unfortunate because you could see the effort of the players and the commitment and desire in wanting to win the game.

“There are six points there to fight for and we need to make sure we can learn from this for the final game of the season.

“We have to accept nothing went our way and we need to make sure we turn it around quickly for the final two games.”

Image courtesy of BBC Sport, via YouTube, with thanks

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