As the Latics prepare for their eighth consecutive season amongst the elite, following a summer of uncertainty, fans will be delighted with the business done in the market and crucially holding onto manager Roberto Martinez.
The immediate post season was an anxious affair, at one point it looked almost certain that
Martinez would be on his way out. Two of the
biggest names in England came calling, first of all Aston Villa, as they did
twelve months earlier, asked the question, but were quickly rebuffed by Dave
That was just the start five times European Champions Liverpool were next to show an interest. It seemed almost certain that he would be making the short move to Merseyside but in came Whelan. For a week or so we were all treated to the ‘Dave Whelan’ show, with minute by minute updates of his manager’s movements, and for good measure he threw in the odd one liner. For me Whelan, is free to say what he likes about his club, he took us to the promise land and we are preparing for an eighth season upsetting the establishment.
Let’s not forget at one stage it looked as if a deal bringing Martinez’s right hand man, Graeme Jones, to South Wales to join Swansea was going to happen, thankfully all non playing staff remain at the DW.
This season the Latics must build on the back of the last campaign. Unfortunately they aren’t able to throw money around, but have invested wisely.
The arrival of Fraser Fyvie will bolster the midfield and the young Scot will be confident of emulating James McArthur and James McCarthy, in becoming a fixture in the starting XI.
Several players have left on free transfers, including Chris Kirkland. Former regulars Mohamed Diame and Hugo Rodellega left to pursue careers in the capital, after not playing a part in the great escape.
Ivan Ramis will provide some much needed competition to the backline, and his signing will have delighted fans, after it was revealed the former Real Mallorca man had rejected West Ham to join the Latics.
With the ongoing saga over the future of Victor Moses likely to run until the end of the transfer window,
Martinez acted in securing the loan deal for
Ryo Miyaichi from Arsenal.
The Japanese international is one of the hottest prospects to have ever come out of
Asia, and will be given the chance to play regular
games this season.
The most recent arrival caught many off guard, Ivorian international striker Arouna Kone joined in midweek on a three year deal. Having played in
Holland and Spain the former Levante man will be expected to lead the line, he netted on 15
occasions last season and a similar return for the Latics will guide them away
If the Latics can get off to a bright start this season could well see
Martinez build on the momentum his side gained
at the back end of last season. A tough run over the festive period awaits, consistent
form across the whole of the season will be required in order to avoid the
usual late dash for survival. Latics fans would love to see a mid table finish
and perhaps a cup run.