Caldwell - Onwards and upwards

Wigan captain delighted to secure Premier League survival

Gary Caldwell: Wigan captain is expecting further progress next season after Premier League survival was secured

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Wigan skipper Gary Caldwell has revealed his delight at sealing Premier League safety, but wants more from the Latics next season.

A late Antolin Alcaraz header gave the perennial strugglers a 1-0 victory over Blackburn at Ewood Park on Monday, which guaranteed them top-flight football with one game to spare for what will be the seventh season in a row.

But former SPL player of the year Caldwell, who is in his third season with the Latics, does not want his team to rest on their laurels.

"We are delighted. It was obviously a struggle after our poor start to the season, and we found ourselves in the bottom three for much of the season," he told Sky Sports News Radio.

Massive achievement

"The form in recent weeks has really propelled us up the table, and to get safety with a game to spare is a massive achievement.

"The penny just seemed to drop with us. Our work-rate, character and belief in each other improved. Then once the results improved, we had more confidence to play attacking football, like in the first half against Newcastle."

However, as much of a success the Latics have been in the second half of this season, their captain thinks that they are capable of much more.

"We want to use this as a platform to progress even further as a football club and finish higher up the league. I came here to try and improve, and next season that's what I, and the team want to do," he added.

The Scottish centre-half also reserved much praise for Roberto Martinez, who has been touted around for many more sizeable managerial posts.

"He is a calming influence on the club on a daily basis. It is easy to get caught up in your problems, and look at what is going wrong," he added.

"He is meticulous, watches games over and over again. Tactically he is outstanding.

"Who knows where this club can go? It's a small club in terms of size, but we believe in ourselves and believe we can take things a lot further and become an established club higher up the Premier League."