Football - Coyle embarrassed by McClean rumour

Wigan manager Owen Coyle is "embarrassed" at claims that winger James McClean was dropped from the squad to face Yeovil because he refused to wear a shirt embroidered with a poppy.

PA Sport Report

The Derry-born winger, who moved to the Latics from Sunderland in the summer, received death threats and faced a storm of criticism last year after opting to wear an unmarked shirt against Everton in the run-up to Remembrance Day.

Rumours escalated on Sunday afternoon that the Republic of Ireland international had been dropped from the Wigan squad over the issue - but Coyle revealed he sustained a dead leg in training and had simply missed out due to injury.

Coyle said: "The only reason James McClean didn't play because he was injured, it's as simple as that.

"He would certainly have been involved if he was fit. I'm never evasive and always up front, but I'm actually embarrassed that I'm getting asked that question in this day and age."

Coyle's team were 1-0 victors at Huish Park, with Marc-Antoine Fortune grabbing the only goal.

The Latics manager added: "We've been outstanding in the seven games we've played this month. Anyone who's watched our games will know we have a quality side.

"I thought we had a slow start in the game, Yeovil bossed it for the first 20 minutes, but in the 10 minutes beforehand there was only one team taking charge, and that was us.

"We had three cleared off the line, hit the woodwork, and were really in the ascendancy. We came out and dominated the second half and had numerous chances.

"You've got to give credit to Yeovil. They are a good side and battle away and their quality belies their league position."

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