Dave Whelan says Premier League survival remains Wigan's priority

Dave Whelan: Looking forward to Cup final, but considers Premier League safety to be a must

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Dave Whelan says Premier League survival remains Wigan's priority after booking their place in the FA Cup final.

The Latics saw off Millwall 2-0 at Wembley Stadium on Saturday and will return to the home of English football in May to face either holders Chelsea or Manchester City.

The cup has provided a welcome distraction for Wigan this season, but they cannot afford to take their eye off the ball in the league.

They remain inside the drop zone with seven games to go and Whelan concedes that staying up must be the top target for all concerned.

The Wigan chairman said: "When we come out in the final it is something that is going to be a very special day.

"But it [top-flight survival] is massively important, we have done it for eight years now and everybody said we would last one year.

"It is extra important this year because of all of the extra money coming into the game - I tend to plough a lot of that money into our youth facilities because Roberto and myself believe in getting our young players coming through."

Whelan has a history with the FA Cup, having broken his leg whilst playing for Blackburn in the 1960 final defeat to Wolves.

The Latics' chairman could now lead out Wigan at Wembley for this year's final but he admits even a victory would not banish the ghosts of 53 years ago

"The dream so far is okay," he added.

"I don't think it [playing in a final and being the chairman of a club in the final] has ever been done before, I might be in the Guinness Book of Records.

"But nothing makes up for losing in a cup final, I broke my leg and it finished my career in the top flight."