Boyce: Diame Wigan jibe was misquote
Latics fans reacted angrily after Diame was quoted in the Daily Mirror as saying: "The truth about life in Wigan is that there is nothing to do. It is a crappy place. The town is tiny, and there is no atmosphere. I go in to training, I return home afterwards, and that is all I do."
But Boyce, who has played alongside Diame since he arrived DW Stadium in 2009, stressed his team-mate had no intention of causing such offense, before describing how much he enjoys life in unfashionable Wigan.
"I think sometimes when a player's first language isn't English it makes it difficult when he talks to the media and they don't understand what he's trying to say," Boyce told ESPNsoccernet. "It's easy for lads to get misquoted and it's even happened to me before when I've talked about the differences between up here and London.
"I've lived up here for four years and obviously it's completely different to life in London, but I have only good things to say about living in the North. Everyone is friendly and life isn't as busy as in London. I've enjoyed it."
Boyce says it has been tough trying to convert what is a generally rugby-supporting town to football, especially after rugby league giants Wigan Warriors enjoyed a 19th top-flight title triumph in 2010, but the 31-year-old defender believes people are starting to come around.
"I think football is getting there in Wigan," he said. "The town is renowned for its rugby and when I first came here you would always see people out and about in rugby tops but, going into town lately, you can see that the football tops are starting to come – it's slowly changing.
"Wigan has got a great rugby history and tradition and we are competing against that, but football is getting more recognised and staying in the Premier League will ensure it keeps improving - it's our job to ensure that happens. "
Boyce is doing his bit to interact with Wigan's fans, providing them with regular behind-the-scenes updates on life at the Latics through his website www.emmersonboyce.com, and he has been delighted with the response to his venture.
"I think fans are interested in what players get up to in our spare time and what our thoughts about games are," Boyce said. "I decided to set up a website which gives fans a match report after the game and have a little inside view of what players are thinking and have some interaction.
"I've had a fantastic response and we get fans e-mailing in with good feedback - it's been great. I haven't joined Twitter yet - I think I'm just happy to stick with the website at the moment."
Emmerson Boyce was speaking to promote the 188SPORT 'Moments In Time' campaign to find football's greatest game-changing moments. Join the debate today at www.188sport.com/moments