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After Wigan Athletic consolidated their position at the summit of League One with victory over Cheltenham on Saturday, boss Leam Richardson was fulsome in his praise for his side, who have now won each of their league games since the middle of August.
Goals from Callum Lang and Charlie Wyke saw Richardson’s men claim an ultimately convincing 2-0 home victory over the Robins, which leaves them tied on points with former Premier League rivals Sunderland, as the long race for automatic promotion gets up and running.
Wyke finally broke his scoring duck at Accrington last week after seven successive blanks, and the summer signing from Sunderland has now begun to add goals to his impressive all-round contribution.
The powerful striker will certainly have a tough task in breaking down a Sheffield Wednesday defence which has conceded just six league goals so far – a record bettered only by Wigan’s five – but his confidence will be soaring ahead of the Owls’ visit to the DW Stadium.
Though the Latics were knocked out of the EFL Cup last week after a defeat to Sunderland, they remain on track for a return to the Championship after two years away, with a sixth straight win over one of their potential rivals being well within their grasp.
Following another draw at home to Shrewsbury a week previously – plus successive defeats to Morecambe and Plymouth before that – Moore is aware that spurning such a golden opportunity to seal maximum points for the first time since August will heap further pressure on his team.
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Though they have been adept at keeping the back door shut, as befits their manager’s reputation as a rock-solid defender, Wednesday have lacked punch in the final third and are among the division’s lowest scorers so far.
To that end, ex-West Brom striker Saido Berahino has been brought back to England after spells with Zulte Waregem and Charleroi in Belgian football, with the 28-year-old penning a deal initially until the end of the season.