Youth team boss Tony Philliskirk praised goalkeeper Chris Renshaw for his stunning performance in their opening day stalemate with Hartlepool United on Saturday.
The young Latics faced a long trip up to the North East on Saturday morning and Philliskirk was impressed with his defensive line but admitted he expects more from his frontmen.
He said: “It was a long journey, well over two hours on a Saturday morning which is something we are not used to. It was a lovely warm day but we did play a bit lacklustre. I thought we started okay but on the day Hartlepool were the better team.
“Our goalkeeper Chris Renshaw was superb on the day and was our best player. Without Chris in goal, I do think we would have got beat.
"Going forward we were slightly disappointing. We got in some good areas but our final ball into the box was poor and our set piece delivery was not up to the standard we expect.
"We had a few players out, but I’m not making any excuses. Callum Scullion and Rahul Parmer are out injured, whilst Kallum Mantack was also missing. We also don’t have international clearance for the Irish lads yet so we were missing a lot of our regular players.
“There were positives from the game as we come away with a clean sheet, we did well defensively and the performance of Chris was pleasing. The work ethic of the team was good but we just have to improve our quality going forward.”
Philliskirk’s men face longer away trips this season after being drawn in the North East section of the league, but it is something which the manager is relishing.
“We have got six or seven long distance trips this season which isn’t ideal but at the same time it was nice to meet new people, play at different venues and play different teams.
“This is my 19th season in the job here, and playing the same team year in year out can get a bit monotonous so I’m happy to be in the North East section of the league,” he continued.
“If the players want to progress in the game they are going to have to come up against all sorts of opposition so it’s a good learning curve for them."
The youngsters entertain Burton Albion on Saturday at Chapel Road (12pm kick off).