Jewell ready for Chelsea
By Alex Dunn
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Wigan boss Paul Jewell insists his side will be ready for The Premiership.Wigan boss Paul Jewell insists his side will be ready for their debut Premiership clash against champions Chelsea.
Despite having a hefty transfer chest to play with, Jewell has struggled to bring in new recruits as he looks to build a side capable of competing in the top flight.
Norwich midfielder Damien Francis has emerged as Jewell's latest target but irrespective of who arrives at the JJB Stadium, the promising young chief is confident he will have a team in place ready for Jose Mourinho and his expensively assembled outfit.
Jewell believes that if his team are organised in the right manner - and his track record suggests they will - then Wigan will be able to compete.
''My point is that it's not about how much money you have, it's about how you organise your team,'' Jewell told the Sunday Mirror.
''Mourinho has great belief in his players and they have great belief in him.
''I too have a winning mentality - we have only lost 25 games in the last four seasons - and there is no reason to suppose why we cannot compete on the pitch with every Premiership team this season.
''I wouldn't rule out us beating Chelsea in our first match of the season. It's a one-off and everything is possible in football.''
Whilst Wigan's match-up with Chelsea has caught the imagination, Jewell is well aware that games against teams at the bottom of the table will in all likelihood have a greater bearing on their season.
''If we play to our best and our mentality is right and the top sides don't play to their best we can beat them,'' continued Jewell.
''But staying in this league won't be about beating the big boys - it'll be about taking points off other promoted sides and smaller clubs.
''Of course if I was a pundit and I was asked who would be relegated I'd have to mention Wigan as a candidate but it would be wrong for people to underestimate us.''
Jewell could be handed a boost ahead of the season's opener with the return to fitness of last term's top goalscorer Nathan Ellington from a shoulder operation.
''I feel good now but it takes time to get match-fitness so whether I'll be up to speed for the new season remains to be seen,'' said Ellington.
Meanwhile, Wigan continue to be linked with an approach for former Tottenham and Wolves target man Steffen Iversen.