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Oldham boss Wild ready to return to reality after FA Cup giant killing at Fulham

PA | 2mo
Lifelong supporter and academy coach Wild took Oldham's reins on December 27.

Caretaker boss Pete Wild is ready to leave his dream job behind and return to the stands as a fan despite masterminding Oldham's FA Cup giant killing at Fulham.

Lifelong supporter and academy coach Wild took Oldham's reins on December 27, and just 10 days later guided the League Two outfit to a 2-1 third-round win at Craven Cottage.

The Oldham supporter-turned-boss even left his train travel and match ticket unused on Sunday, as Sam Surridge's penalty and Callum Lang's header stunned the Premier League hosts.

Wild insisted he would revel in his madcap touchline celebrations when Wigan loanee Lang buried the 89th-minute winner, but could not fathom his invitation to appear as a studio guest on Sunday night's Match of the Day.

Asked if an FA Cup giant-killing would be enough for him to chase Oldham's permanent manager role, Wild replied: "No, like I've always said, I've been an academy manager two minutes.

"The fairytale will come to an end at some point, reality will strike. And you've got to be prepared for that.

"I've got a family to support and a mortgage to pay. Maybe there's a conversation with the chairman, but I'll just crack on until told otherwise.

"The players have earned the right to be in the fourth round; whether I'm there or not is up to the club.

"If I'm there to lead them out then fantastic. If it's a new manager, then I'll be in the crowd again, giving my support to the team."

Oldham's dramatic winner came after Aleksandar Mitrovic missed a penalty with his first touch after climbing off the bench.

Serbia striker Mitrovic was the man furious with team-mate Aboubakar Kamara for defying team orders to take – and miss – a penalty in Fulham's 1-0 win over Huddersfield on December 29.

Mitrovic popped up with a late winner to save the day against the Terriers, but was the fall-guy on Sunday as Fulham slipped to a poor loss.

Denis Odoi's neat finish put the hosts in front early in the second half, only for Surridge to equalise from the spot, just hours before he returns to Bournemouth as his Oldham loan comes to an end.

Mitrovic missed a penalty of his own, hotly disputed but awarded by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) – and then Lang thumped home a fine headed winner for Oldham.

"I'm probably the proudest man in Oldham, and I'm so proud of the players, they gave the club everything today," said Wild.

"I never ever thought that in my life I'd appear on Match of the Day.

"You watch it all your life as a football fan."

Expecting to cop some light-hearted flak over his exuberant celebrations, Wild added: "I did exactly the same thing at Port Vale away last week.

"Everyone was making fun of me, but that's life. They can show it all they want.

"I haven't paid my mates for the ticket yet. They're on their way back to Euston out of pocket, but they said they'd stand me the £70 now!"

Fulham boss Claudio Ranieri criticised his players for lacking the required fight for victory.

"Congratulations to Oldham; I gave a chance to players who aren't involved and they missed their chance," said Ranieri.

"If there is an opportunity to buy somebody, the chairman is ready.

"I didn't see the desire (or) the passion that I saw with Oldham."



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2Manchester CityMan City30242479215874
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs30201957322561
4Arsenal30186663392460
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd30177658401858
6Chelsea30176750331757
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves30128103836244
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16Southampton3079143450-1630
17Burnley3186173559-2430
18Cardiff CityCardiff3084182757-3028
19Fulham3145222970-4117
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield3135231857-3914
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool31237170185276
2Manchester CityMan City30242479215874
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs30201957322561
4Arsenal30186663392460
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd30177658401858
6Chelsea30176750331757
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves30128103836244
8Watford30127114244-243
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham31126134146-542
10Leicester CityLeicester31125144043-341
11Everton31117134342140
12Bournemouth31115154356-1338
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle3198143140-935
14Crystal Palace3096153641-533
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2996143242-1033
16Southampton3079143450-1630
17Burnley3186173559-2430
18Cardiff CityCardiff3084182757-3028
19Fulham3145222970-4117
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield3135231857-3914
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