Wild's big chance to get Athletic back on track

Date published: 28 December 2018

A few ‘tweaks here and there’ and Athletic will soon be back on track – that’s the view of caretaker manager Pete Wild ahead of tomorrow’s League Two clash at Port Vale.

Academy coach Wild was handed the reins temporarily overnight following the sacking of Frankie Bunn, and the local lad is relishing the prospect of making a positive impression on the first-team scene at a club that is hardly in freefall.

Bunn was sacked after the Boxing Day 6-0 humiliation at Carlisle, but they are still 12th in the table and within relatively easy reach of the play-off zone.

“There’s no rescue mission here,” said Wild in his first pre-match press conference today.

“Yes, we’ve lost a bit of track, but this league is like that.

“One minute you’re up then next you’re down.

“It’s long slog this league.

“We’ve had a couple of bad results, but we’re not in a deep run of bad form.

“Just two games ago we were beating Bury here, and what a performance that was.

“It needs ticking over, with tweaks here and there, and we’ll see where that takes us in the short term.

“If we win tomorrow, then great, we move onto New Year’s Day, and we’ll see where we are then.

“We all know what’s after that, it’s Fulham in the Cup, but for me it’s just a day at a time, and we’ll all learn as we go along.”

Clearly Wild is ‘nervously excited’ at the prospect of leading Athletic at Vale Park tomorrow.

This short-term opportunity is one he jumped at the chance to take on.

Wild added: “It’s an opportunity I couldn’t turn down, it’s something that I’m excited about, the chance to test myself at the next level.

“As long or as short as this process may last, it’s a great opportunity for me.

“I’m an Oldham lad and I only live up the road - I‘m determined to give this everything I’ve got.

“I want to put smiles back on faces, and hopefully we can do that quickly.

“We’re in the top half of the table and we’re only seven points off the play-off positions.

“football can change quickly of course, so we’ve got to go out at Port Vale and get a reaction.

“Fans, staff, players, we’ve all got to try and get that reaction tomorrow for the good of the club.

“Hopefully be 5pm tomorrow we can be just four points off the play-offs.”

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