Premier League

Roberto Martinez not focusing too much on Gareth Bale's threat

Roberto Martinez: Wigan can't afford to spend time worrying about Gareth Bale

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Wigan boss Roberto Martinez is not losing any sleep about having to counter the threat of Gareth Bale this weekend.

The Latics remain in deep trouble at the wrong end of the Premier League table and their next big test comes on Saturday when fit-again Bale and Tottenham visit the DW Stadium.

Bale returned from an ankle injury in the 3-1 win over Manchester City last weekend, and while Martinez would have rather played against a Spurs side without him, he does not see any point in fretting about it.

"Tottenham can only play with 11. They can't play with 13 or 14," he said.

"If Gareth didn't play it would just be someone else and their squad is of the highest level, so it is not as if it would be substantially easier for us if he wasn't there.

"We all agree Bale is one of the best players in world football. He will always bring an extra threat.

"But if you want to beat a team like Spurs, with Gareth Bale or not, you need a very good level of performance.

"The players went through it in the last campaign and they went through it two years ago when it went down to the last game of the season. That is part of our aim. We have to stay in the Premier League. That is what we want to achieve.

"We are in exactly the same situation as Spurs. They are in the final games of the season, trying to achieve their aims, which is to qualify for the Champions League. Our aim is different but the end feeling is the same.

"We need to enjoy the challenge and make sure we are as good as we can be. Where the experience of previous seasons can help us is that it ensures we will not get affected by the occasion."