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Wigan Athletic - Live News And Odds



Wigan Athletic

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Wigan Athletic Football Club are relative newcomers in English football, having been founded in 1932, and especially so when it comes to top-flight football, having reached the Barclay's Premier League for the first time in 2005. Despite being considered a smaller club when compared to their Premiership counterparts in terms of financial resources, fan base, and indeed their shorter history, Wigan have managed to not only retain their status in England's top division, but even manage mid-table finishes each year.

Wigan's trophy case includes the 2002-03 Football League Second Division championship, Football League Third Division championship in 1996-97, and twice winning the Football League Trophy in 1984-85 and 1998-99. The Latics were also winners of several non-league trophies, including the Northern Premier League honours in 1970-71 and 1974-75.

For most of their history, Wigan were a non-league club, only achieving election to the Football League for the first time in 1978. In fact, they owe their election to the fact that Boston United, winners of the Northern Premier League that season, were ineligible for admission to the Football League due to stadium and facilities not being up to league standards.

The Latics made a bright start to their league history, finishing sixth their first season and in the top half of the league the following two seasons. In 1981-82, Wigan won promotion to Division Three (currently Coca-Cola League One), where they would spend the next 10 seasons.

After being relegated in 1992-93, the club's fortunes would turn dramatically in 1995 following its purchase by JJB Sports owner Dave Whelan. His stated ambition to take Wigan to the Premier League was widely ridiculed, but, true to his word, Wigan achieved promotion three times to make Whelan's dreams come true in ten short years. Included in the run was a move from the club's old Springfield Park ground to the new 25,000 capacity JJB Stadium in the 1999-2000 season.

In their first Premier League campaign in 2005-06, Wigan finished a very respectable, if not surprising, 10th. The next season found a late season slump requiring a victory at Sheffield United on the final match day to avoid relegation. The 2007-08 season began well with Wigan in first place after four games. Forward Emile Heskey also became the first Wigan player to represent England at senior international level. The run of good fortune would not last though, and an up and down campaign ended with the Latics in 14th place.


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