Making history: Wigan Athletic boss Roberto Martinez wants players to enjoy Wembley trip

By Matt Simpson

Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez wants his players to enjoy the occasion as they prepare to make history against Millwall at Wembley.

The Latics have beaten Bournemouth, Macclesfield Town, Huddersfield Town and Everton on their way to reaching their first ever FA Cup semi-final.

But despite encouraging the players to get excited for game, the Spaniard is wary of their Championship opposition and has called on them to maintain focus.

“The occasion is phenomenal,” he said. “You don’t get many opportunities to make history and to play in an FA Cup semi-final at Wembley is a first.

“We need to be excited and we need to enjoy the occasion.

“But on Saturday we need to just focus on the game and make sure we are as good as we can be against a very dangerous side.”

Wigan are in good form having lost just once in their last seven games in all competitions, but Martinez is expecting a competitive match against Kenny Jackett’s side.

“His team has a real strong mentality and a good determination to compete with whoever they play and that’s what we’re going to find in the semi-final,” he said.

“They have been impressive, especially away from home, and they are always hard to beat. They are energetic and well organised.”

The two sides last met at Wembley in the 1999 Football League Trophy – now the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy – with the Latics winning by with the only goal on this occasion.

That was their second trophy under chairman Dave Whelan, and Martinez has graciously handed over the honour of leading out the team to the man who propelled the club to the Premier League.

“The chairman is the reason why we are where we are,” he added.  “He has brought life into our football club.

“Eight seasons on the trot in the Premier League is an incredible achievement.

“Now being in the semi-final at Wembley for the first time in history, he deserves leading the team out.”

Image courtesy of BBC Sport, via Youtube, with thanks.

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