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Friday 15 December 2017

McCarthy insists Wigan must Bolt' for survival

IRISH international James McCarthy believes Wigan must repeat their storming finish to the Premier League last season to avoid relegation starting with their grudge derby clash with Bolton this weekend.

Last weekend's 1-1 draw with Everton leaves the Latics rooted to the foot of the table on 16 points, five from safety, with only 14 matches remaining but McCarthy has reiterated his respect for boss Roberto Martinez.

"The gaffer instills confidence in us week in, week out, in training and that won't change," he said.

"Next week will be massive. It's a derby, and we know that we need to take maximum points.

"There's still 14 games to go, 14 cup finals, and if we can end the season as strongly as we did last season and the season before we'll be fine," he added.

McCarthy admits Wigan Athletic paid a high price for the fear factor in the camp as Everton sneaked a point at the DW.

The Latics looked like recording a first win in 10 games on Saturday when they took the lead deep into the final quarter through a Phil Neville own goal.

But the nerves were evident as the Latics became decamped in their own half, and the pressure told when substitute Victor Anichebe headed home with eight minutes left.

Nervous

"We're obviously disappointed, to be ahead going into the last 10 minutes and not win the game is very frustrating," McCarthy added.

"We got the goal I felt we deserved, but maybe we got a little nervous towards the end and it was disappointing to concede from a set-piece.

"We had a decent shout for a penalty at the end, but the referee thought otherwise and it's just not going for us at the moment.

"It could be a big point for us, but the over-riding feeling is of disappointment because we put ourselves in a winning position.

"It's gone now, though, and we need to look at next week's game at Bolton to try to put it right.

"For us to have had large spells of possession against a team as good as Everton, and looked dominant at times, is a good sign.

"The mood in the camp is still great -- we're all sticking together and we know we can do it."

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