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Wigan Confirm Richardson as Permanent Boss
Wednesday, 21st Apr 2021 17:57

Wigan Athletic have confirmed the appointment of Leam Richardson, Paul Cook’s Latics, Chesterfield and Portsmouth assistant, as their permanent manager on a three-year deal.

Richardson has been in caretaker charge at the DW Stadium for much of this season and has impressed new owners Phoenix 2021 Ltd.

The 41-year-old didn’t rule out joining Cook at Portman Road after his appointment early in March, however, with Wigan hitting run of form - they have won their last four - to move out of the relegation zone, his permanent appointment by the Latics was looking increasingly likely.

Cook will now have to look elsewhere for his assistant having worked with Richardson first of all at Accrington and then with the Spireites, Pompey and Latics.

Currently on his staff are Gary Roberts, who he brought in as first-team coach, along with Matt Gill, who remains from the previous management in the same role.

Blues U23s coach Kieron Dyer has played an increasing role with the senior side since Cook took over, the new manager having been impressed by the former England international's coaching abilities and he may well be in contention.

As previously reported, former Town central defender John McGreal, who played alongside Cook at Tranmere, is a potential candidate, although we understand the former Colchester boss may not be in the running as he is keen on a management job of his own rather than an assistant's position.

Ex-Blues forward Noel Hunt is believed to have been under consideration for a role at Portman Road by Cook, who he played for at Portsmouth and Wigan, ahead of his appointment having previously worked as an assistant manager at Swindon. The Irishman was at last night’s game at Northampton, presumably scouting on behalf of another club.

Commenting on Richardson’s appointment as boss, Wigan chief executive Mal Brannigan told his club’s official site: “In Leam, this club is fortunate to have an excellent coach, a strong leader and most importantly a person full of integrity – we’re delighted he believes in our vision and wants to lead the club into a bright future.

“Many of the staff and players I speak to talk about the inspiration and motivation Leam has provided to them during this challenging period.

“We have all seen that with the belief the new ownership has provided to the whole club, Leam, Gregor, the staff and players have thrived and that’s really encouraging for a strong and stable future for Wigan Athletic.”

Richardson added: “I’m very proud to have been given the opportunity by the new ownership and Mal. I’m very privileged when you know about the history, heritage and fanbase of the club, so it’s not a hard decision to make.

“I think when you know the history, even back to 1995 when Mr Whelan took the club and built the stadium, and you see the players and the world class managers that have come through.

“From my point of view, if I can emulate half of what they’ve done and really give my all for the fans, I’ll be very proud.”

Photos: Reuters/PagePix

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tractorlad01 added 18:01 - Apr 21
We’re in trouble...

TractorBlue00 added 18:07 - Apr 21
Would love to see Keiron Dyer on the touchline for us, could be valuable experience for him if he was to become our manager one day.

TractorFrog added 18:08 - Apr 21
That's a shame, but I still trust Cook. I don't believe Richardson was the only reason for his success at other clubs.

prozach added 18:08 - Apr 21
I hope this isn't a Lambert / Culverhouse conundrum

stiffy501 added 18:14 - Apr 21
Hope this isn't the brains behind the success gone

Europablue added 18:14 - Apr 21
A lot of people like to give all the credit to the assistant now that Cook isn't getting results, but it's a bit of an exaggeration to think that he is like Samson without his hair. Cook could hit the ground running with his usual partner, but he could potentially build a great relationship with Dyer or whoever.

PortmanTerrorist added 18:15 - Apr 21
I don't believe Richardson was the only reason for PC's success at other clubs either....but a bigger part than we perhaps want to believe. PC was a great appointment for ME with no budget, but is he the right man to give significant funds too, does he have the knowledge of players above this league, can he attract them, and can he get any kind of a tune from those that will still be at the Club next season? I think the new owners have a big question to answer and if things do not improve at all from the current desperate level we have fallen to, then do not be surprised to see Nigel Pearson show up, even though he is hardly pulling up trees in the Championships !

pennblue added 18:25 - Apr 21
Alex Ferguson always rotated his number two every few years, no great shakes, nothing to see here. (But PC could do with hiring another strong number 2, and KD could sit in there and learn)

BlueBlood90 added 18:26 - Apr 21
Really disappointed to see this. He’s been with Cook everywhere during his successful periods as manager and done a great job at Wigan with little to no resources. Hopefully Cook can manage without him and bring in a good replacement.

Saxonblue74 added 18:32 - Apr 21
Well, that's screwed a few theories on here! Thought Cook was going to be at the Wigan helm next season?!🤣

Tractorboy58 added 18:34 - Apr 21
cook out

Cheshire_Blue added 18:36 - Apr 21
In view of Paul Cook,'s record so far (2 wins in 12) he may have seen a move to Ipswich a short lived proposition.

Ipswichbusiness added 18:48 - Apr 21
First Lambert without his assistant, now Cook without his.

I would ask everyone to remember that it is all very well to say sack all the players, but we will have to get new ones in. If the Club is in an utter shambles that will be difficult (unless we offer the new signings huge amounts of money).

TractorRoyNo1 added 18:56 - Apr 21
Have we got the right one of this pair?

Hiltzkooler added 18:57 - Apr 21
To say that it is ridiculous to question the continuing management with PC, I would say evaluate the risk of giving the task of serious personnel change, player investment, player integration and strategic planning to Cook. Cook hasn’t delivered on any, any of the required deliverables since commencing his duties. I hope that cook wasn’t hanging his hat on getting his old number two back...and that his role was complimentary rather than critical to Cooks historical successes

stormypetrel added 19:02 - Apr 21
Bets on Cook departing for “irreconcilable differences “ with new owners or Cook being sacked...rather nervous to see what happens

Bert added 19:04 - Apr 21
Not necessarily related to this but I would have expected our new chairman to have said some words of wisdom and comfort by now. Supporters are more than hurt by this new low and with doubts now being voiced about Cook’s ability to manage a bloodbath and then a transition, we need to know a bit more about the owner’s intention for next year. I accept that may not come until after the last game and players released but if that’s the case he should say so if only to increase season ticket sales.

Phil1969 added 19:09 - Apr 21
Wrong appointment in first place sadly talks like a supporter but that’s not enough. Even our so called better players Wolfe Downes aren’t playing for him. Change afoot at season end.

cornishnick added 19:13 - Apr 21
Perhaps he can take Cook as his assistant? Please?

billlm added 19:13 - Apr 21
Prozach,I've been saying this for weeks, I'm convinced it is,

billys_boots added 19:20 - Apr 21
The Assistant Manager role could be the most important signing of the next few seasons.

Lightningboy added 19:29 - Apr 21
Well there goes the brains in this latest set-up.

We never do anything properly anymore do we?..which is why we are where we are.


Esseeja added 19:34 - Apr 21
I don't care who you are, EVERY manager needs an assistant manager, it takes so much of the main man's shoulders in terms of training workload.

Skip73 added 19:47 - Apr 21
Phil1969, I dont think its the fact Wolfie and Downes aren't playing for Cook, its more that those 2 overrated nobodys just arent good enough.

Phil1969 added 20:00 - Apr 21
Skip good point I could have said Dozzell Lancaster a n others the point is nobody is playing for Cook. We can’t change all the squad.

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