Roberto Martinez has resigned from Wigan Athletic.
Martinez, who has been at Wigan for five years, helped the club achieve their biggest accomplishment in their club history when Wigan beat Manchester City to win the FA Cup, but his side couldn’t stay up in the Premier League and were relegated to the Championship.
Here’s what Wigan Athletic owner Dave Whelan said about Martinez today:
“He wanted permission to move so I’ve given that. He has 12 months left on his contract, so whoever comes in for him must pay the remainder of his contract. He feels he’s not the man to lead us back into the Premier League. I’ve got to accept what he feels.
“He loves Wigan and the fans. We have to move on now and want applications for the job.”
With Martinez resigning from Wigan, the question now is where the talented manager will go. He passed up opportunities last summer to manage at Liverpool and West Ham United, but this summer the skies the limit for him. He could manage on the European continent, or he could get a top job in the Premier League with a club such as Everton or Stoke City, either of which would be a step up from Wigan Athletic.
Everton appears to the most likely destination with Dave Whelan giving Everton permission to speak with Martinez. Goodison Park would be an ideal destination for Martinez. He’s used to managing squads on a small budget. Plus, he has connections in Spain, so he could bring in several promising players to the club. On top of that, he would have an opportunity to influence some of his stars at Wigan to join Everton including Arouna Kone, Callum McManaman and James McArthur, just to name a few.
Prior to managing at Wigan Athletic, Martinez was a successful manager at Swansea City. But it was at Wigan Athletic in his four seasons at the club where he achieved so much with very limited resources, keeping the club in the Premier League for so long even though most football pundits and supporters labeled them as relegation certainties for season after season.
In addition to his prowess as a manager, Martinez has also been an accomplished pundit on ESPN and UK television. Wherever he goes, the future is bright for the 39-year-old Spaniard.
Where do you think Martinez will end up at?