Martinez rules out Figueroa move
Wigan Atletic manager Roberto Martinez insists he is not under any pressure to sell. Following Maynor Figueroa's astounding goal at Stoke on Saturday, Martinez had to play down talk the Honduran might be on his way out of the DW Stadium and now long-serving utility man Paul Scharner has been linked with Fulham.
Although Scharner is a pivotal figure at Wigan, the widespread view is that Martinez needs to offload players before he can look to bring new faces in during next month's transfer window and a deal could be done. However, Martinez insists no pressure is being applied to cut costs by Dave Whelan and the focus remains on getting the most out of the squad currently at his disposal.
"We are not in a position where we have to sell," said Martinez, who is reportedly lining up Swansea's Leon Britton as a potential replacement for Scharner. "I am looking to bring players in during January and I am sure we will do that but the focus just now is getting the best from players we already have.
"You won't hear me rejecting speculation about anyone coming to Wigan because we are having to look in a lot of leagues to find the right characters. For us, it is not just about signing good players, it is about making sure the personalities are perfect too. But I am certainly not looking to lose any players in January."
Whether Wigan would actually resist a big-money offer is open to debate. Figueroa is clearly a man in demand, not least at Sunderland, where Steve Bruce is keen to be reunited with a player he signed from Olimpia for a nominal fee at the start of 2008.
However, Martinez feels a move now would be a mistake for the 26-year-old, and a potential distraction just six months before the World Cup begins in South Africa. "Maynor is an exceptional footballer," said Martinez.
"I would be very surprised if teams didn't want him because he is ready for big things. But this is a key moment in his career. The World Cup is a few months down the line and now would not be the wisest time to change. He is a young man and he has enough time to get to the highest level. For now he is staying here."