Martinez: Youngsters not for sale

Latics are bottom of the Premier League, four points from

safety, and rival clubs are looking to prey on their precarious

position by tempting away their best players.

Martinez faces a testing 48 hours before the transfer window

closes as he and his side have to travel to play third-placed

Tottenham on Tuesday, while in the background speculation persists

about bids for some of his stars.

The Spaniard has defiantly declared he will not sell the likes

of Moses, who has been linked with a return to London with QPR, or

JMcCarthy, who has been on the radar of a number of clubs since

moving from Hamilton in 2009.

However, he may be persuaded to cash in on Rodallega, whose

contract expires in the summer.

The Colombian’s situation at the DW Stadium has been keenly

watched by several clubs since last summer and he has scored only

twice in 17 appearances this season – both goals coming at either

end of their three-match losing run.

But Martinez has made it clear he is under no pressure to

offload and all he had to think about was how it would affect their

relegation battle.

“We don’t have to sell players to bring money in, we are not

forced to do anything,” he said.

“If anything is to happen between now and the end of the window

it will be because we want to finish with a better squad than we

started with.

“I feel the squad is stronger now than it was at the start of

the window: Callum McManaman has come back (from a loan spell at

Blackpool) a completely different player and Jean Beausejour (from

Birmingham) has been a well-timed addition.

“I am happy with the two additions we have made.”

Martinez did not say he expected Rodallega to leave before the

end of the window but he admitted they had to have a back-up plan

for any departures.

“Obviously when you get into a position when your contract is

short-term with the club it is a completely different situation,”

he said.

“We are in a position where no-one is bigger than the football


“Whatever could happen over the next 48 hours will be in the

best interest of Wigan.

“Every individual situation is going to be down to that


“You always have to work in that way (with a contingency plan)

as it is important we cover all eventualities and possible


“The work is behind the scenes and we will try to get the squad

as strong as we can before we finish the game against Spurs.”

While Rodallega’s immediate future appears to be unresolved,

Martinez is taking a firm stance over his younger players.

“Victor Moses is not for sale. He is one of the biggest assets

we have at the club,” he added.

“He is not on the market, he is not for sale and that is the end

of the matter.

“Victor and James are the two younger players in this football

club and it would be wrong for us to sell these assets.”

Wigan have not won since December 10 and a trip to White Hart

Lane, where Tottenham have lost only once this season and is also

the scene of their infamous 9-1 defeat two years ago, makes ending

that sequence more difficult.

But Martinez takes heart from the fact they returned the

following season to win.

“That was a really difficult afternoon but to be able to go back

there and be one of the few teams to get three points there last

season showed a typical Wigan reaction,” said the Latics


“All the ingredients we showed that day we will have to show

again because it is a tough place to go and Spurs are probably the

most dynamic team in the league in how they play football.

“Previous experiences will help us perform tomorrow.”