Wigan administration: Ex-captain Emmerson Boyce urges players to keep focus

Emmerson Boyce
Emmerson Boyce was part of Wigan's FA Cup winning team in 2013

Ex-Wigan captain Emmerson Boyce hopes the players can keep their focus after the club went into administration.

The Latics are the first professional English side to enter administration since the coronavirus pandemic began.

They face a 12-point deduction either this season or next depending on their final position in the table.

"The club's close to my heart. I spent nine years there," 40-year-old Boyce, who was part of Wigan's FA Cup triumph in 2013, told BBC Radio Manchester.

"For the players, I'm hoping they can keep focus.

"There was a similar incident when I played for Luton Town. We went into administration and it is stressful and hard to keep focus but I'm hoping the players can do what they can do on the pitch and just let the people off the pitch decide what happens with the club."

The club had been owned by Dave Whelan, who steered them from the fourth tier of English football to the Premier League by 2005 and the FA Cup triumph eight years later. Whelan sold the club to Hong Kong-based International Corporation in 2018.

There was a further change of ownership in June when Next Leader Fund took control.

The club's financial plight comes in contrast to their recent form, with their comfortable 3-0 win against Stoke on Tuesday, extending their unbeaten run to nine games and moving them to 14th in the Championship.

The Latics are eight points above the relegation zone.

"We had some massive ups and downs in the Premier League years but there's some fantastic times I had at the club," Boyce added.

"It also shows the job Dave Whelan and his family did for the club, bringing so much money in and navigating the difficult times.

"Fingers crossed everything goes in the right direction and an investor can be found."