John Sheridan credits Wigan for improved second-half display

Wigan Athletic v Port Vale – EFL Trophy – DW Stadium
Wigan Athletic v Port Vale – EFL Trophy – DW Stadium (PA Wire)
19:27pm, Sat 24 Oct 2020
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John Sheridan admitted the Sky Bet League One clash between his Wigan side and Plymouth was the proverbial game of two halves – which ended 1-1.

The first 45 minutes was all Plymouth, who led at the break thanks to Ryan Hardie’s 34th-minute goal, after a mistake from Wigan defender Tom Pearce.

But the second period was all Wigan, who equalised 21 minutes from time through Will Keane, and had another ‘goal’ from Lee Evans disallowed.

“I don’t like saying it about my team, but I thought we were poor in the first half,” said Sheridan.

“And I think the lads would accept we were poor, we need to do a lot, lot better.

“We find ourselves 1-0 down, and the goal’s down to us, it’s a mistake from us.

“And we could easily have found ourselves two or three down, we were very fortunate to only be one behind at half-time.

“But again, I have to applaud the players for the way they came out in the second half.

“For the period leading up to our equaliser I thought we were very good, and we just did things we hadn’t been doing in the first half.

“We started winning tackles, playing the ball forward quickly, sprinting more, and we started causing them problems.

“After the goal it became a bit of a basketball match, the last 20 minutes was end to end.

“It could be a big point in the end.

“Obviously I want to win every game, like everyone, and get a bit of confidence back into the team.

“Yes it’s stopped our run of defeats, but we are fortunate to do that after where we were at half-time.”

Sheridan was particularly unhappy about Evans’ disallowed ‘goal’, after the linesman adjudged the ball to have gone out of play before Joe Garner headed it back to the Welshman.

“Whether it’s a goal or not…I’ve seen it again and it is a difficult one,” added Sheridan.

“But I can’t for the life of me understand how a linesman can give a ball out of play – similar to last week at Charlton – when the referee is in a miles better position.”

Plymouth manager Ryan Lowe unsurprisingly had a differing view of the incident.

“My players stopped, that’s why Wigan scored,” he said.

“If my players hadn’t stopped, Wigan wouldn’t have scored.

“It was just confusing what happened with the officials.

“I was always calm – it went out and then it came back in.”

Lowe felt his side allowed two points to slip through their fingers.

“We should have won, we should have had three points,” he added.

“And that’s not a criticism of my players because they left everything out there.

“Listen, we know it’s tough against Wigan, they are a Championship team with some Championship players still in there.

“They did cause us a lot of problems in that second half, but I wanted to be two, three, four goals up by that point.

“We just need someone to be a bit more ruthless in front of goal.”

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