Doncaster Rovers: The opposition view on Wigan Athletic

The tough tests keep on coming for Doncaster Rovers as they head to one of the favourites for promotion, Wigan Athletic.

Friday, 10th September 2021, 12:00 pm
The DW Stadium, home of Wigan Athletic

Putting an incredibly tough year firmly behind them, the Latics have made a good start to the campaign after bringing in a series of eye-catching signings.

We spoke to Paul Kendrick of the Wigan Post to get the lowdown on Wigan, and began by asking about Rovers’ new signing Joe Dodoo, who played at the DW Stadium last season.

Q: How did Dodoo perform at Wigan?

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PK: He came in midway through the season with Wigan seemingly dead and buried, and played his part - along with the rest of the squad - in pulling off a really great escape.

He's been signed more as a number nine. What position did he play most in for Wigan? Do you see him as a number nine?

He always played as the lone striker in a 4-2-3-1, with three attackers trying to support him when possible. He was solid rather than spectacular, doing a lot of the hard yards which allowed others to play.

Q: Were there attempts to keep him at the DW? If so, how did it play out?

He was offered a new deal at the start of the summer, but didn't accept the terms on offer, and Wigan quickly looked elsewhere. Given the subsequent striking recruitment (including Charlie Wyke and Stephen Humphrys) it looks like it would have been as back-up rather than a regular starter.

Q: On Wigan, what have you made to the start of the season and where they are at heading into this weekend?

PK: Given the tough start (all five opponents were tipped for promotion) and 15 new players to bed in, 10 points is a stunning return. A fortnight on the training ground will hopefully have helped the squad further gel.

Q: There's been a lot of eye-catching transfer business. Is there a determination to win promotion this year?

PK: It's always going to be difficult bringing in so many new players and expecting them to gel straight away. But looking at the quality of recruitment, anything less than promotion/play-offs would be seen by most fans as a disappointment.

Q: What system and style of play does Leam Richardson favour?

Uses the 4-2-3-1 formation which Paul Cook played here, and likes the team to play an attractive brand of football.

Q: Who are the players to watch out for?

Forward Callum Lang has been sharp in the early games, while centre-half Jack Whatmough - summer signing from Portsmouth - commands the backline.

Q: Is there any early team news?

James McClean, Jordan Jones and Thelo Aasgaard have been away on international duty, but no other injuries to contend with.

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In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.