Talking Roberto With Pie Eaters Footie

Michael Regan

At SB Nation we have a fantastic Wigan Athletic blog that goes by the name Pie Eaters Footie. With Roberto Martinez's hiring finally official, they were kind enough to answer a few questions about the plucky Spaniard to give Evertonians an idea of just what to expect over what will hopefully be many seasons to come.

RBM: First what are your thoughts on Roberto Martinez's tenure at Wigan?

PEF: Historic and life changing. The two words I think sum it up best for me. Roberto Martinez came to this club off the back of Steve Bruce. Now Bruce may have been able to make us a mid-table teams, but in doing so had crippled us financially. Roberto came in and changed that. He slashed the wage bill, brought in young talent and changed the style of play.

The days are over where a Wigan fan will be happy with just a win, we now have to perform well for a win to be satisfied. It's the change in mentality that Roberto Martinez has brought to the club and I am not just talking about at the first team level. Every age group is now taught more in mind with having the ball at their feet and enjoying the passing side of the game.

Then there is of course the FA Cup win, marred by our relegation. That for me sums up Roberto's reign. A wonderful guy who has it in him to produce cup winning teams, yet on the other hand our lack of financial power and squad depth were his and our Achilles heel.

RBM: In today's age of footballing, the backroom staff can be just as important as the manager. Is there anyone Martinez could be bringing with him to Merseyside that Evertonians should keep an eye on?

PEF: Well this all depends on what happens at Wigan now. Most of the back room staff at Wigan are Roberto's men and women. Most of them, I assume, will follow. It hinges on one thing: with Graeme Jones, will he be asked to lead Latics? He is currently Roberto's assistant manager and the feeling is he could be promoted. Yet if he is overlooked, expect him to lead the coaching exodus.

Jones is the management side of things for him and Martinez.

RBM: Martinez is well known for trying to play a distinct style of football. Did it take him a while to implement it at Wigan and do you think that will cause problems at Everton while everyone adjusts?

PEF: It is more likely to settle in better at Everton that it did at Wigan. Right now you have much better technical players than we did when Roberto first started. He had to slowly bring them in and push out the lads who showed they just couldn't hack it for us. There will be a transition time of course, as there always is, yet I feel that Roberto will slip beautiful into the role and be able to get his thoughts over really well to the players.

RBM: Martinez will be replacing a man who is well known for his transfer prowess. Martinez has had to work miracles on a budget, what are some of his greatest successes?

PEF: There have been a lot for Roberto. James McCarthy, James McArthur, Roman Golobart, Mohamed Diame, Victor Moses, Shaun Maloney, Arouna Kone and Antolin Alcaraz are just a few of the names of players we bought on the cheap (or for free) and turned them into established Premier League Players. What Martinez does really is isolate where best a player can help the team, it may not necessarily be where they want to play, yet it is the best position for that player.

The greatest success for me over the past couple of seasons has to be Shaun Maloney. There are other players in our squad who Roberto has brought along exceptionally well and will go onto bigger things, but Shaun is a player who Martinez brought back from the dead. After struggling at Villa for so long Shaun went back to Celtic and there he struggled to recapture the form which saw him as one of the top Scottish talents.

When we signed him for £1 million two summers ago I thought it was a magnificent deal. Yet the man didn't player for over seven month while he recuperated from an injury. Since then the midfielder has been an ever present scoring threat, scoring some fantastic goals and making plenty of chances for the side.

RBM: The ink isn't even dry on Martinez's contract and there is already speculation about which players could join him at Goodison Park. While Everton doesn't have a lot of funds available, who are the most likely to join Martinez in his Wigan departure?

PEF: A couple of the lads who are available on a free, I would expect them to follow Roberto. The likes of Maynor Figueroa and Antolin Alcaraz the two I would expect to be brought in to help boost your ranks. Yet will Roberto look to sign any of our players? I think he would be tempted to try and bring McCarthy, Callum McManaman and Shaun Maloney.

Will he get them? If Kenwright is willing to stump out about £30 million for the three of them you could have a deal.

RBM: Martinez is known for slow starts at Wigan followed by a fantastic run in to secure survival. Was there a specific reason behind this or does it have to do more with the talent of the squad than anything?

PEF: Personally I put it down to the Wigan fans. Sometimes early season the DW Stadium is a bit quiet and we only really get into the season the second half and then drive the players on. Others put it down to Roberto's tactics to be more conservative the first half of the season, before an attacking change just after the New Year. I have a feeling it is just a Wigan sort of thing. Since our second year in the Premier League we have only ever really performed after Christmas.

RBM: With Wigan playing next year in the Championship, is there any idea who the chairman will turn to try and guide Wigan back to the Premier League?

PEF: No one has a solid idea. There are names, and lot of them, but it truly is just speculation at the most. The only man who will know what is going on will be Dave Whelan. We have reportedly had about 50 applications for the job, it may not be that big, but apparently there have been a lot of applicants.

I just hope we go for someone fresh and untested to try and push the club further on. The likes of Steve McClaren and Owen Coyle would not be welcomed.

RBM: Finally, what is your prediction for Martinez at Everton? Do you think he will be able to get the club to loftier heights than Moyes was able to?

PEF: Martinez maybe able to win you that elusive trophy but apart from that I don't know. Martinez has it in him to really go high in his management career. The way he talks and looks after the players shows he has it in him. What it balances on now is trying to get it 110% right at Everton. If he managed to get the right sort of players in quickly enough and build the foundations of his side, then I see no reason why Everton couldn't be looking at the top four.

But then anything is possible in football.

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