Wigan to Birmingham - The Connections
There is more than just the M6 connecting Wigan and Birmingham, down the years there have been quite a few players who have donned the blue of both the Latics and Brum, here are a few:
Archie Gemmill, Stuart Storer, Kevin Langley, Andy Saville, Leigh Jenkinson, Mark Ward, Matt Jackson, Mike Newell, Terry Cooke, Peter Atherton, Mark Burchill, Nicky Eaden, Geoff Horsfield, Jeff Kenna, Mario Melchiot, Emile Heskey and of course the management team of Steve Bruce and Eric Black.
A mighty list there then and almost all could be granted cult status at the Latics for one reason or another, so to choose just two to take a closer look at seems a crime leaving so many former, or present, favourites out but two I will choose and these are:
Langley had two spells at the Latics 1981-86 and 1990-94 in his time at the club the classy midfield man racked up 317 appearances giving him the club record.
It was in his first spell that Kevin Langley made his name, the former painter and decorator was part of a fantastic midfield alongside Tony Kelly and Graham Barrow but due to financial limitations at the time Langley was sold to Everton in 1986 and he won a League Championship medal with the Toffees
Two years later he found himself at Birmingham who were in the 3rd division at the time, he stayed at St. Andrews from 1988-90 before re-joining the Latics and he enjoyed another four seasons at Springfield Park before being released at the end of June 1994.
A loyal servant to the club spending 9 years in total with the Latics as a player, he also does a bit of coaching with the kids at the Latics Centre of Excellence and Kevin`s son Josh is a first year pro and plays regularly for the reserves.
Known affectionately in his time at the club as Mr. Wigan Athletic, Matt was club captain and a fantastic ambassador who put forward a very professional image of the Latics. Making 167 appearances from 2001-07 at what was then the JJB Stadium, Matt was the skipper the day Latics won promotion to the Premier League back in May 2005.
Originally brought in as a right back the classy defender soon made centre half his position forming great partnerships along the way with Jason De Vos, Ian Breckin and Arry DeZeeuw. Matt left the Latics in June 2007 to sign for Watford, he is now retired from playing, he still lives in the Wigan area and is seen regularly around the club, many supporters would love to see Matt brought back officially in either a coaching role or ambassadorial capacity.
Matt Jackson spent 10 games on loan at Birmingham in 1996
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