Martinez backing Cleverley

Wigan boss tips former Latics loan player to bounce back

Tom Cleverley: Backed by former boss Roberto Martinez to show his mettle

Roberto Martinez has backed Tom Cleverley to show his mettle against Wigan following his England nightmare.

The Manchester United midfielder, who spent a season on loan at the Latics in 2010-11, missed several chances for the Three Lions before being substituted after just over an hour of their 1-1 draw against Ukraine.

Cleverley played in an unfamiliar forward role for England and Martinez believes the 23-year-old will be eager to bounce back against Wigan at Old Trafford on Saturday.

The Wigan boss told the Daily Star: "If anything, Tom is going to want to be better in the next game.

"He has already shown he is a top player. You can judge players not by the chances they miss, but whether they are prepared to go back into those situations to get a scoring opportunity again.

Guarantee

"He has already shown he is a top player. You can judge players not by the chances they miss, but whether they are prepared to go back into those situations to get a scoring opportunity again."

Roberto Martinez

Quotes of the week

"I guarantee Tom will get into those positions time and time again.

"He's a tremendous example of the future of English football.

"He is mature beyond his years and can play in many positions.

"The role he played for England was completely different to the one he plays for Manchester United, which is different to the one he played for us.

"Sometimes it can be a negative to be able to play in a number of positions.

Special

"Some players are a jack of all trades but not special in any of them.

"Tom is special in what he does, while understanding other roles within the team just as well.

"But if you were to ask what is his best position, I'd say central midfield.

"I think that Manchester United always saw him as that - even while he was here."