Martinez: Experience will be key

BY foxsports • November 18, 2011

Martinez's side are bottom of the Premier League with just five points after losing their last eight games. The Spaniard admits the situation is a concern but, ahead of Saturday's vital clash against fellow strugglers Blackburn, he retains the utmost confidence. Martinez said: "Morale is good because I would say we have been in this situation time after time. "We have got the right characters in the dressing room and we know how to face adversity. "These are situations we want to get out of. Not because of the run of defeats, that is just a stat. It is just the lack of points. "That is something we never expected, especially if you look at the level of our performances. "We can change it around quickly and we have got the right personalities and talent in the dressing room to get the points we need and achieve our aim." Like Blackburn, Wigan beat the drop only on the final day of last season in May. Having been written off by many prior to that, Martinez emerged with his reputation enhanced and was targeted by Aston Villa over the summer. The 38-year-old resisted those overtures to remain loyal to Athletic and chairman Dave Whelan rewarded him with a new contract. Whelan's faith in Martinez does not appear to have wavered despite this season's poor results but, even if it did, the Latics boss would not let speculation bother him. Martinez said: "Any manager would tell you we cannot lose any time or waste any energy thinking about what could happen and what would be a specific scenario. "All your focus is on the next game. "In the last few games we have been losing points because of small margins and we need to concentrate on that. I am excited and look forward to the challenge. "I think it is a very tough period and we need to find the solutions." Martinez's Blackburn counterpart Steve Kean also seems to have the full backing of his club's owners in spite of continuing on-field struggles. There is a big difference, however, in that while Martinez still has the majority of fans on his side, supporter disgruntlement with Kean has been clearly evident. Martinez said: "That is not for me to comment on. "As a manager, we have got so much to do to try to affect the result on Saturday that I am not going to waste any energy on how the perception is going to be outside. We know clearly what we have to do. "It is November - we need to remember that, it is still early in the competition - but with the amount of points we have got now, we have got to change it really quickly. Anything else apart from that doesn't really concern me. "One of the biggest strengths we have got is that we are a unique club in how to face adversity. "We get together, we help each other and the fans realise how important they are. They make sure they give that extra help to the players. "It is quite clear we are in a very bad run of negative results and we need to change that." Blackburn are just a point better off than Wigan but, even though there could be tension in the air on Saturday, Martinez anticipates an exciting game. He would not even be surprised if the game followed a similar pattern to the corresponding fixture last season, which Wigan edged 4-3 in February. Martinez said: "It is clearly a situation very similar for both sides. We probably should have had more points. "Both clubs know each other really well and I feel it is going to be a really open game. "Last season was one of the best games we had at home, with seven goals, and we hope we can repeat the level of performance we showed that time. "It is a great opportunity for both clubs to look forward to the game."


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