Rosler, the rhetoric, and his downfall

I said last week that Wigan Athlectic’s manager Uwe Rosler had a limited amount of time to pull a rabbit out of the hat to save his job, or Chairman Dave Whelan’s mighty wand would strike.

This week the deed was completed; Whelan sacked Rosler, after less than a year in the job.

Wigan languishes in the dirty territory of a Championship relegation zone, which is contradictory to every one of their fans’ and punters’ pre-season expectations, hopes and predictions.

However it isn’t results that have cost Rosler his job, it’s his rhetoric.

Under Roberto Martinez’s management, the team’s results and performances were far worse on occasions. However, Martinez was shrewd; he took some semblance of positivity from each performance.


In a piece I’m putting together titled “Martinez is not The Messiah”, I reason that whatever happens in the career of Roberto Martinez he will be eternally grateful to Dave Whelan. No other chairman would have stuck with a manager on his performance statistics.

I’ve heard Martinez in press conferences talk about the most minute and ridiculous details after some appalling defeats.

“Our corners were near perfect today”… but we lost. “He hasn’t scored in ten games although his running off the ball is excellent”…but we lost. “We looked tired , that’s comes from playing three games in two weeks”…he was/is a master of deflection.

Rosler ain’t that cute, not yet. He told the press and fans as it was. His honestly was his downfall.

When manager at Brentford and performances were in need of criticism, his honesty strategy worked. It would have had the desired effect on terraces and dressing room alike.

Wigan is a hybrid. The squad has over a dozen international player and some of those players are on Premier League salaries. I’m sure some of them come back from international duty delighted to be warming the bench on a wet Tuesday night in Blackburn.


Rosler started the season badly, never finding a formula for recovery. He’s changed formation, personnel, captaincy, brought in a fitness coach, extra training. All to zero effect in stemming the teams impersonation of a sinking stone.

He has said openly in various press conferences/interviews that “the team isn’t fit enough” and “lacked concentration and passion”, and “Some of those performances tonight will result in certain individuals not starting for me again in a very long time” etc. etc.

If performances improve after such rhetoric, fine. It tells paying spectators who’s the boss. If not, it confirms he has a problem and doesn’t know how the fix it, which clearly he didn’t.

He said after the Bolton game that “the team gave up and folded”. He was wrong, they didn’t. They played badly, Bolton ran over, past, through Wigan players with ease and desire. Anyone who saw the game would not have chosen some of his after match comments. His viewpoint was more indicative of his own mind set.

Rosler’s honesty, openness and criticism of certain individuals was untimely his downfall. He clearly went toe to toe with certain players, he blinked first. Towards the end of his ill fated time as Wigan manger, Owen Coyle ended up openly degrading Whelan’s beloved club. Coyle hasn’t worked since.

When you go against Wigan Athletic, you go against Dave Whelan. Rosler didn’t understand the importance of this club to Whelan. Martinez did.

From a distance, Rosler come across as a caring, motivated, sincere individual. I’m sure he will learn, move on and find a new employer very soon.

During future interviews if he gets asked “What do you think of this tie?” I’d encourage him to curb that honesty gene. There’s a time and place for it. Honest.

The Author

Owen Peters

One thought on “Rosler, the rhetoric, and his downfall

  1. Some fair points made there in terms of Martinez & his post match comments – a 9-1 defeat away at Spurs led to him talking about the positives he could take away from the performance!!
    However its wrong to highlight the 2 manager’s different approaches in that respect as the main reason why one was given the push & the other wasn’t bearing in mind that we don’t know for sure whether Rosler’s approach led to open spats with certain players
    The main reason being that Bobby could get away with heavy kickings & floating around the relegation zone because Whelan acknowledged that he was coming up against some of the richest clubs in the world whilst operating on a comparative budget of 3 stale beans & a bit of mouldy cheese (& a budget that was getting reduced year on year) & was always able to keep the club competitive & never cut adrift.
    Martinez has also know Whelan for almost 20 years & knows exactly how to play him

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