Wigan to appoint Owen Coyle
Former Burnley and Preston midfielder Graham Alexander has tipped Owen Coyle to be a success at Wigan Athletic.
Succeeding Roberto Martinez at the DW Stadium, Alexander spent just under three years working with Coyle when the pair were at Burnley together up. A bright period that saw the club promoted to the Premier League for the first time in their history, the current Fleetwood Town manager revealed how Coyle had a significant effect on both the club and him personally.
"I had a fantastic time playing for him at Burnley," Alexander told ESPN. "He came in half way through my first season and we did ok. He was great for me personally, I was 37 at the time but it wasn't a problem for him at the time, it was about what I did on the pitch, playing and training wise and we got on great.
"Obviously his first full season we got promoted to the Premier League and it was just a fantastic time to play under a manager that gave you the freedom to express yourself and really believed in you."
Signing a 12 month rolling contract, Coyle has been tasked with returning Wigan to the Premier League at the first attempt. Believing his former manager can handle the pressure he is likely to face and continue the club's tradition of playing good football, Alexander also feels that Coyle is the ideal candidate to take the Latics back to the top flight.
"He's a football man," Alexander explained. "He loves the game, he loves the day to day involvement of training and being around the players and it's definitely one of his forte.
"It's a great job, obviously them getting relegated was a big negative for the club but they'll definitely have the support of the chairman and Owen knows the Championship, so I think it's a good match.
"I don't think the pressure will bother him at all. It won't be any different to the pressure he had at Burnley to first get us to survive in the championship and. He's a very confident man and he passes that onto his players. He's got a great personality.
"I think it's a great job for him and there's plenty of good players there. He'll want to put his own stamp on it and bring in a few faces. To be fair the way we played at Burnley we had an attacking offensive team. We went all out to score goals, but had players to take on the defensive responsibilities.
"He was especially good for the attacking players I found, he gave them a great amount of freedom to express themselves and try things. I think he gets excited about the teams he manages, he also wants them to be good to watch. I can't guarantee they'll be top to, but I'd expect them to be in the top half at least."