Wigan boss rules out Kirkland exit

Kirkland has been linked with a move away from Wigan after losing his place as first choice at the club, following the arrival of Ali Al Habsi.

Martinez said: “I have got a great relationship with Chris and we have spoken about his role at the football club.

“I told him he has been a number one for many seasons and has earned the respect of the fans and everyone.

“Some of the things that have been in the press I think have been taken out of context.

“We need Chris Kirkland at this football club, there is no other issue at all.

“If he was to be happy and not playing, there would be something really wrong.

“He is a great competitor, has great standards and his role at the football club is vital – playing or not playing.”