Manager Richie Wellens has called tomorrow night’s clash at home to Walsall as the biggest game of the season.
Following the goalless draw against Oxford United, a win against Walsall tomorrow night will put them level on points with the Saddlers.
However, a win for the Saddlers could take them further away from Latics with time running out so the manager knows the importance of the game.
He said: “For me it’s the biggest game of the season just because it allows us to get a bit of the gap between the other teams.
“There’s obviously Wimbledon playing tonight, Rochdale are playing tonight and Northampton are playing tonight so if we can win this game, no one will make points on us and there’s another game gone.
“We’ve still got our games in hand on them so it’s a huge game but were playing alright at the minute. We are playing decent stuff and I like the positive intensity we are working at.”
Latics come into the game unbeaten in their last two games which included a 2-1 home victory over Blackpool.
“I think at home bar the Portsmouth result we’ve been pretty good,” he commented.
“The results have been there so I want to keep continuing that. I don’t think Boundary Park is an easy place to come for opposing teams, especially when we play at a certain intensity and a pace that when teams come here they don’t want to work at that pace.
“I think against Blackpool, I think first half we were a little bit slow, we made a lot of chances but we were a little bit slow in our play.
“Second half we really upped it and got after them and Blackpool found it tough against us so I want us to continue to work at that work rate and that pace and intensity.”
Walsall have Dean Keates as their new man in charge taking over from Jon Whitney and Wellens knows Walsall can be tough opposition.
“If you look at the budget they work on. There are some really good budgets in this league so I’m not surprised to see them where they are,” he said.
“Would I have expected them to be in the top half? Not really. They’ve got some really good individual players that get them through games but you have to take your hat off to the manager beforehand because he was doing a really good job.
“You look at the budget that they work with compared to Oxford’s budget; I think Walsall are level on points with Oxford so if you look at Oxford’s budget and Walsall’s budget, I think it’s a club that’s doing okay at the moment.”