Martinez expects Latics to survive

The Premier League’s bottom side have been written off in many

quarters having spent the majority of their campaign in the drop

zone. That is despite attracting plaudits for their playing style,

an uplifting last-gasp win over Birmingham last time out and having

an impressive 12 players on international duty last week. Martinez

believes all those factors give his side, who are just one point

below the safety line, confidence for the remaining eight games of

the campaign, starting with Saturday’s testing encounter against

Tottenham. The Spaniard said: “From the outside it is

understandable. “If you look at the clubs that are fighting to

avoid relegation with, people are going to have their views. “But

as we have always done, we are here to defy the odds and prove

people wrong. “We feel we have been playing at a very good level in

the last few weeks and now it is a matter of getting that good play

reflected in the table. “It would be a great, great achievement to

defy the odds and spring a surprise. “But that is the nature of

Wigan Athletic – we are a fantastic football story and we want to

carry on with this dream. “There is a really good mood. The game

against Birmingham allows you to have that feeling. “We are in a

great moment, everyone is fully fit. “We had 12 players flying

around the world representing their countries and there is huge

belief and excitement about catching up some of the points that we

feel we have been missing.” Wigan have had players in action in

Africa, North America and Asia, as well as various European

countries, over the past week. Aside from the three involved in

America who are yet to return, all have reported back fully fit.

Martinez added: “That is a real sign of how committed the squad is.

“Everyone wants to play a role, everyone wants to help towards the

success of the football club.” Martinez was due to spend his

afternoon engaged in live webchat with supporters on the club’s

website. The former Swansea boss believes the fans will be crucial

in the remaining fixtures, particularly those at home against

Tottenham, Everton and West Ham. Latics have slashed prices for

under 16s for the visit of Spurs this weekend in the hope of

generating a big crowd. Martinez said: “It is one of the biggest

strengths we have at the football club. “We are a very tight unit

and it is important to have constant feedback from the fans and

work together towards the future of the club. “It will be

interesting to speak to the fans live for an hour and get their

views and make sure we are all ready for our big battle on

Saturday.”