Wigan Athletic

DW Stadium

Capacity: 25,138 (all seated)
Address: Loire Drive, Wigan, WN5 0UZ
Telephone: 01942 774 000
Fax: 01942 770 477
Ticket Office: 0871 663 3552
Pitch Size: 110 x 60 metres
Pitch Type: Grass
Club Nickname: Latics
Year Ground Opened: 1999
Undersoil Heating: Yes
Shirt Sponsors: DW Fitness First
Kit Manufacturer: Puma
Home Kit: Blue and White
Away Kit: Yellow With Blue Trim
Third Kit: All White

External View
External View
South Stand
South Stand
East Stand
East Stand
West Stand
West Stand

The DW Stadium was opened in 1999 after the Club moved from its former home of Springfield Park, where it had been in residence since the Club's formation in 1932. The DW is a functional stadium but overall it has somewhat of a bland look. In fact, I would say that it looks more interesting from the outside from a distance than it does within. The four separate stands are of roughly the same height and are all single tiered. They are also quite steep meaning that fans are sat quite close to the playing action, although this is mitigated a little by the fact that the stands themselves are set back a fair distance from the pitch perimeter.

Both the side stands have large supporting steel frameworks visible above their roofs, whilst oddly both ends are different, having the steel framework located below the roof line. Unusually for a modern stadium, it does seem to be lacking in the number of corporate areas and executive boxes. There is an electric scoreboard above the Boston (East) Stand, on one side of the ground. The stadium is also shared with Wigan Warriors Rugby League club.

Away fans are located in the North Stand at one end of the stadium, where up to 4,800 visiting supporters can be accommodated. Although this stand has a capacity of 5,500 seats, the allocation is restricted to 4,800 to prevent over crowding on the concourse. The stadium is functional and the facilities adequate, but it just seems to lack something, to give it that memorable feeling. The view of the playing action and leg room are generally adequate. To the left of the away section is where the singing Wigan fans tend to congregate, who are aided by a drummer. The public address within the stadium is particularly loud, none so when 'I'm a Believer' by the Monkees is blasted out just as the teams get ready to kick off.

The concourses are spacious and the facilities are good. There are screens showing the early kick off game and a betting outlet. Food on offer includes a range of Hollands Pies, including Chunky Steak, Meat & Potato and a Cheese Pie (all £2.60). There were also Herta Hot Dogs (£2.90). The stewards were generally helpful and relaxed.

Scott Carpenter a visiting Newcastle fan adds; 'the concourses seemed too small for the large amount of away fans attending on my visit, which led to it being rather uncomfortably crowded at half time'. Pat Bird a visiting West Bromwich Albion fan informs me; I was very impressed with the price to get in (£20), for a seat right behind the goal. The end given over to visitors was steeply banked with generous leg room. So far so good, however, I would have to agree with the comments of the Newcastle fan. It was an almighty struggle to get through to the loos at half-time. The concourse and toilet areas did not seem adequate to cope with a large away following. We parked in the car park behind the visitors end, which was fine, however, it took an age to get away after the match. For anyone visiting the DW you could do worse than have a meal after the match in one of the nearby restaurants before heading for home. Within 100 metres of the ground there is a Franky & Bennys, an Indian restaurant and a number of other establishments'. Directly behind the away end there a Fish & Chip restaurant (which also has a takeaway) called Sharpy's.

Simon Wright a visiting West Bromwich Albion fan informs me; 'Beside the away turnstiles is an entrance to the large indoor Marquee Bar, specifically for the use of away fans. It has the usual bar, big screen television and sells pies, as well as teas and coffees. It's a great comfortable facility and welcomes families.' I was particularly impressed with this facility and with a stage on one side and low lighting, I was almost waiting for the dancers to emerge! However on my last visit, the queues to get served were quite long eventhough there wasn't a particularly large away following in attendance. Otherwise the traditional pub for away fans visiting the DW stadium is the Red Robin, which is only a few minutes walk away from the ground opposite the Cinema Complex. 

The centre of town is about a 20 minute walk away where you will find a Wetherspoons outlet called the 'Moon Under Water' which was popular with away supporters on my last visit. Also worth a visit is the award winning 'Anvil' pub, which is located next to the bus station. Both these pubs are listed in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide. Also worth a mention is the Berkeley on Wallgate (near the railway station). This fair sized pub, had a good mix of home and away supporters on my last visit, serves five ever changing real ales and shows Sky Sports on a huge screen. Andrew MacGregor adds; 'The Swan and Railway pub opposite North Western railway station were very welcoming. They encouraged us to put our Reading flag up in the window and were very pleasant to us all'.

On the concourse, alcohol is available in the form of draught Fosters, Strongbow and John Smiths.(all £3.20 a pint). There are two counters serving beer and to try and bring some the order, at the largest one there is a queuing system in force which is overseen by the stewards. Plus there is a limit of buying two pints per person, so can you can get served relatively quickly compared to some other grounds. My only slight gripe is that no food is served from these outlets, meaning that you have to queue up again at a different counter for that. On occasions where the away end is sold (or almost sold out) then the Marquee Bar is opened at half time too.

From The South:

Leave the M6 to Junction 25 then take the A49 to Wigan. After around two and a half  miles you should pass a junction on your left with the A577 and then approach a large roundabout, that has a McDonalds on the right hand side. Continue straight on but keep in the left lane and then at the lights (with the SCS Sofa and Bed store in front) take the left hand filter lane by the large Asda superstore towards Robin Park. Currently there is a new housing development on the left which has some handy street parking. Otherwise continue straight on passing the Red Robin pub on your right. At the next roundabout go straight across and at the next traffic lights turn right into stadium way for the ground and car parks.

From The North:

Leave the M6 at Junction 26 and follow the signs for Wigan town centre along the A577. After around two miles you will pass an Aldi store on your left before reaching a large a roundabout (which is the junction with the A49). Keep in the left lane and then at the lights (with the SCS Sofa and Bed store in front) take the left hand filter lane by the large Asda superstore towards Robin Park. Then as From South above.

Paul Heywood adds; 'I would recommend that away supporters, travelling from the South, should come off at Junction 26 (see From The North) as there are often queues from Junction 25 towards the stadium.

Car Parking: 

There is a large car park at the stadium, specifically for the use of away supporters, which costs £5 per car or motorbike, £10 for mini buses and £20 for coaches. As you may expect though, there is sometimes quite a delay in getting out of this car park after the game, especially if there has been a larger than normal crowd in attendance. Make sure though that you avoid parking on the nearby Retail Park, as parking there is restricted to two hours and I have been informed of a number of fans who have ended up getting parking tickets (£50) because of this.

Post Code for SAT NAV: WN5 0UZ

Wigan's central railway stations (Wigan North Western & Wallgate stations) are a good 20 minute walk from the ground. So either take a taxi, or break up the journey with a few pub stops on the way!  

On exiting Wigan North Western Railway Station turn left and go down the road heading under a railway bridge. On leaving Wallgate Station turn right and go down the road passing Wigan North Western Station on your left and then proceed under the railway bridge. It is a fairly straight walk along Wallgate Road. On reaching a Domino's Pizza takeaway on you left, the road forks. Stay on the right hand side continuing past a Topps Tiles outlet on your right. After then passing a Volkswagen Garage on your right, you will reach a bridge over a canal, from which you should be able to see the DW Stadium over on your right. Either turn right just over the bridge and follow the locals on a shortcut alongside the canal to the stadium, or continue straight on under a railway bridge and then turn right into Frith Road which leads into Stadium Way.

Adam Hodson adds; 'I caught the train to Wigan Wallgate, crossed the road in between the two stations and I jumped on the 621 First Manchester Bus which dropped me off outside the Red Robin Pub. I then had a short 3-4 Minute walk from the Bus stop to the stadium. Bus No 600, a more Frequent service, runs up to Robin Park Roundabout from the two stations, It's about a 5-10 Minute walk from the roundabout to the Stadium. 

Booking train tickets in advance will normally save you money! Find train times, prices and book tickets with Trainline. Visit the website below to see how much you can save on the price of your tickets:

Common with most Clubs, Wigan operate a category system (A, B & C) for matches whereby tickets cost more for the most popular matches. Category A prices are shown below with other categories shown in brackets:

All other areas of the DW Stadium
Adults £25 (B £22) (C £20)
Over 65's £22 (B £20) (C £18)
Under 18's £15 (B £10) (C £10)
Under 11's £10 (B £5) (C £5)
Under 5's £2

Official Programme: £3
All Gone Latics Fanzine: £2

Wigan Athletic fixture list (takes you to the BBC Sports Website).

Manchester City, Preston North End, Bolton Wanderers & Burnley.

For details of disabled facilities and club contact at the ground please visit the official Wigan Athletic website. 

Record Attendance

At JJB Stadium:
25,133 v Manchester United
Premier League, 11th May 2008.

At Springfield Park:
27,526 v Hereford United 
FA Cup 2nd Round, 12th December 1953.

Average Attendance
2017-2018: 9,152 (League One)
2016-2017: 11,722 (Championship League)
2015-2016: 9,467 (League One)

If you require hotel accommodation in Wigan or the Manchester area then first try a hotel booking service provided by Booking.com. They offer all types of accommodation to suit all tastes and pockets from; Budget Hotels, Traditional Bed & Breakfast establishments to Five Star Hotels and Serviced Apartments. Plus their booking system is straightforward and easy to use. Yes this site will earn a small commission if you book through them, but it will help towards the running costs of keeping this Guide going. 

Access their Wigan and Manchester Hotels pages.

Remember that you can use the above link to book any other hotels that you may need for business or leisure, at home or abroad.

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If anything is incorrect or you have something to add, please e-mail me at: duncan@footballgroundguide.com and I'll update the guide.

Wigan Athletic v Manchester City
FA Cup 4th Round
Monday 19th February 2018, 7.55pm
Lee Roberts (Doing the 92)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?
 
As I am a groundhopper a visit to the DW Stadium had to be done. I have been to Wigan before but not the stadium. Plus add in the chance to see a possible massive FA Cup upset, then this was one game not to be missed.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I was staying in Liverpool as part of my week up north, so it was only a 45 minute drive to the DW Stadium. Parking was surprisingly easy, being able to park right outside the stadium was a bonus, as it was an evening match parking was only £2, however for a Saturday match I would follow the advice to park away from the retail park.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
I didn’t leave enough time to do anything apart from park up, get to the ticket office to pick up my ticket and then get into the ground, so I can’t comment on pubs etc.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?
 
My first thoughts on looking at from the outside were that it looked a nice ground. Once inside I was proved right, the concourse was big enough to walk around even with a big crowd. Nothing really stood out in terms of design but still by no means a "bad" ground.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
Before the game as a neutral, I was expecting an easy Man City win, how wrong I was. After soaking up City pressure for the majority of the first half Wigan were helped by a red card seconds before the break. Once the second half started it was difficult to tell which way the match would go. Will Grigg then scored for Wigan to send the DW Stadium into raptures. Wigan were able to hold on thus completing one of the biggest shocks in FA cup history. The pitch invasion at the end was interesting to see as well and I personally thought the stewards did their best considering the situation could have turned nasty, however the stewards I spoke to at half time were friendly.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
I decided to hang on for a while after the game to get photos and autographs as well as allowing enough time to let the crowds get away, about an hour after the match I made my way back to my car and was away from the stadium seconds later.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
This is a match that will live long in my memory, an unforgettable match and overall the £15 match ticket and £3 program were worth every single penny.

Wigan Athletic v West Ham United
FA Cup 4th Round
Saturday 27th January 2018, 3pm
Elliot Smith (West Ham United fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?
 
The last time I'd visited Wigan Athletic was the day we got relegated in 2011 by throwing away a 2-0 lead to lose 3-2. I was hoping to put that bad memory to rest and advance in the cup was the main reason for going.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I travelled by train to Wigan North Western and had a 15-20 minute leisurely walk to the ground (after detouring for food first).
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
Turned right out of the station and went into a McDonalds for food then turned back past the station and on to the DW Stadium. No issues with home fans and we were wearing colours.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?
 
The DW Stadium is pretty uniform throughout - four single tier stands in the traditional style of no filled in corners. The steps of the away stand are quite steep so you get a decent view. Only sat briefly at half time so not sure what the leg room would be like for a whole game if sat down - probably okay.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game started poorly for us - Wigan were the better team - and Will Grigg scored after seven minutes. Cue the stand on our left to sing their "Will Grigg's on fire, your defence is terrified" song. We tried to get behind our team but playing badly doesn't always help with that. Our best chance came just before the break when Martinez won the ball back but we couldn't hit the target. The second half started better, until the stupid red card for spitting five minutes in. Wigan then got a penalty (a terrible decision - the most ball to arm incident you'll ever see) and at 2-0 down with 10 men there was no way back. Stewards were fine - no heavy handedness and it was the most relaxed away ground of the season (even no frisking down on entry).
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Apart from the fact that a police cordon wouldn't allow us to go the way we wanted to not too bad. A short detour and we were back on the route we wanted to take and we well in time to catch the 17:28 train.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
We played poorly, were knocked out of the cup by a League One team and it was a repeat visit rather than a new ground so, all in all, not a good day.

Wigan Athletic v West Ham United
FA Cup 4th Round
Saturday 27th January 2018, 3pm
Billy (West Ham United fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?
 
I always look forward to FA Cup games as it is a nice distraction from the league for a while. It also normally brings a different style of football as it is an all or nothing game, and no one wants a replay!
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
The journey up from the south was really smooth. The directions provided by this website were very accurate. We arrived about 1:45pm and there was still plenty of parking. Its a fiver a car which I thought was good value.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
Before the game we made our way over to the nearby retail park, just behind the stadium. There is a few chain food places like KFC and Burger King, but we opted to go into ASDA for some pre-match food, there is also a cash machine there too.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?
 
The DW Stadium is a bit plain looking from the outside, but that is nothing new of modern stadia. The away end allowed fantastic views of the pitch. We managed to generate a good amount of noise as we had the whole stand and it was full!
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The stewards were extremely helpful when we ended up going into the wrong block. They maintained a good sense of humour on what seemed to be a busy day for them. We didn't use any facilities in the ground but they seemed a little bit under pressure with so many away fans. I didn't see anyone have too many problems getting what they needed, as long as they were prepared to wait. The atmosphere was a bit flat from the home side, until they started scoring. Whereas, we were making all the noise until they went ahead! The game was a very one sided affair with Wigan coming out on top 2-0 and as the far better team. The old excuse of "we are concentrating on the league" stuck in all of our minds! There was some top class friendly banter between both sets of supporters which added to the overall enjoyment of the match.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
After reading some reviews about getting away from the ground being a bit congested straight after the game, so we decided to make use of the restaurants on the leisure park until the crowds had cleared. After about 45 minutes all of the car parks had cleared (we were the last car) and it was a fairly simple journey to get out onto the M6.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
It was good to visit another away ground and have a day out with my Father. The game was pretty much as expected once we had heard the team news. The Wigan fans were friendly as were the staff and I hope to see them back in the Premiership soon.

Wigan Athletic v AFC Bournemouth
FA Cup 3rd Round
Wednesday 17th January 2018, 7.45 p.m.
Paul Sheppard (AFC Bournemouth fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?
 
A nice local game for me as I live near Manchester. I also thought we had a good chance of winning too!
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
Pretty easy: A colleague of mine is from Wigan so he tipped me off where to park pretty near the ground.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
As it was after work I didn't have time for anything other than meeting my friends outside the ground at 7.30pm.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?
 
I have been to the DW Stadium several times before: I like the ground and the away end but it really lacked atmosphere for this cup replay as the crowd was so small (just under 5,000).
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
An awful performance from us, summed up by Afobe's horrible miss when we were one nil down in the second half. He had a couple of other chances that could have changed the game and this was pretty much the final nail in his Bournemouth career I'm afraid. Wigan played well and were more committed throughout and deserved their win but we were shocking. As already stated atmosphere poor due to crowd size: the highlight of my evening was the cracking cheese and onion pie at half time.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Because I had such a good parking spot and the crowd was so small I got away very quickly and easily.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
I have been to the DW Stadium 4 or 5 times now and usually enjoy it. We were poor from the start and the shocking weather when the match finished summed up the evening. When the half time pie is the highlight you know it's been a disappointing match.

Wigan Athletic v Crawley Town
FA Cup 2nd Round
Saturday 4th November 2017, 3pm
Stephen Webb (Crawley Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?
 
A new ground, and one I was unlikely to get another chance to visit anywhere in the near future.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
I left Three Bridges at 08:30 and caught the train to Wigan via London Euston. Arrived around 12:30, including a wait in London for around 45 minutes. We got a bus up to the ground from the station, took about 15 minutes, and part way back after a short walk.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
Had a walk up the High Street for a quick bite in Subway then into the Raven pub which was opposite. This is a nice large pub with a good choice of ales. Plenty of Wigan supporters inside, but must say they were extremely welcoming of myself and my 15 year old daughter, a theme that was continued throughout the day.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?
 
The DW Stadium is a lovely ground, befitting their days in the Premiership. The Away stand was at one end of the pitch and gave a very good view of the game. The rest of the ground was similar.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game itself was very entertaining and we went there expecting a rout given our position in the league and recent performances, especially given Wigan's position. After a big surprise going 1-0 up, Wigan slowly showed their superiority and we ended up losing 2-1 after an excellent shot from outside the box. We only took around 170 supporters, we don't travel well, but a home crowd of around 3000 made for a poor atmosphere, though we were told they could hear us singing. We were able to stand throughout the game with no issues with the stewards, who were all friendly and helpful. Food and facilities were ok and not too pricey and staff were very friendly.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Getting away from the ground was easy, walking through the shopping centre and then getting a bus for the remainder of the journey back to the station. Had time for a coffee at Starbucks in the town before getting the 18:09 back to Euston, Seamless journey and back at home by 10pm.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
One of the best away days I've had. Good easy journey there and back, plenty to do before the game, and the people of Wigan seemed very friendly.

Wigan Athletic v Northampton Town
Football League One
Tuesday 19th September 2017, 7.45pm
Alex Compton (Northampton Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?
 
I haven't been to Wigan for a few years and it was my son's first visit to the DW Stadium, this was my lads 48th league ground that he has visited.
 
How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?
 
The journey up from Northampton was nice and easy apart from a bit of traffic on the M6 around the Warrington area. Finding the DW Stadium was very easy. The away car park is the furthest away from the stadium and cost £5 but the car parking attendants were very happy and friendly and I felt the car would be safe.
 
What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?
 
I didn't do a great deal before the game due to the time we arrived so we went straight into the ground and we didn't really see any home fans before the game to speak to.
 
What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?
 
The DW Stadium from the outside looks really impressive and once inside it was no different. It has that Premier League feel about it and certainly is one of the best grounds in this league.
 
Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..
 
The game was quite one sided due to Northampton playing one up front and trying to play for a draw which didn't work. The atmosphere was very quiet apart from the Cobblers fans singing, the Wigan fans did start to make a bit of noise once they scored but the annoying drum that the Wigan fans have in the home section was very irritating. The stewards were great and were having a laugh and a joke with me and my son and even offered to help us put our flags up.
 
Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:
 
Due to the attendance being only 7,700 it was fairly easy getting away from the ground. I would imagine that if it were a big crowd it would take a fair while getting away as there is only one road in and out of the ground. We were back home by 12.30am which was good going.
 
Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:
 
Apart from the result and the ridiculous decision not to award us a penalty late on in the game we both enjoyed the journey and our experience of the DW Stadium and look forward to our next visit.

Wigan Athletic v Leeds United
Football Championship League
Sunday 7th May 2017, 12 noon
Shaun (Leeds United fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

Another first visit and as it was the last game of season with us destined to finish seventh regardless of the result it was a game with no pressure!

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Pretty easy. Flew into Liverpool and then drove along the M57/M58 pass the M6 and onto the A577. There's a reasonable amount of on street parking off the left hand side of this road (we got a space of Laithwaite Road).

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

As I was driving I didn't visit the Red Robin which is the main pub for away fans near the DW Stadium. We grabbed a burger and chips from a van outside the ground and both the food and the price was okay. Home and away fans were milling around the ground with no bother at all.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

Unusually for a new stadium the DW has no corner areas, just four stands with gaps in between. Other than that the North Stand, where the away fans are housed, is a fairly standard stand. It has an internal concourse up a flight of stairs and then into the stand which had clear views from behind the goal

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

This was the last match of the season and with nothing resting on the result meant that the game was a rather dull affair. With Wigan already relegated a lot of home fans didn't turn up (4,500 away fans making a total attendance of about 15000) however a few die hards over to our left made a surprising amount of noise so at least there was atmosphere. A lot of away fans had brought inflatables to throw around meaning there was as much entertainment off the pitch, as there was on it! Stewards were efficient without being overly friendly.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Easy enough. Was at the M6 junction with the M58 about 20 minutes after leaving the ground.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day generally, poor game but at least a goal each for the fans to cheer, sunny and warm, easy parking, what more could you want? (Apart from a win!).

Wigan Athletic v Barnsley
Football Championship League
Thursday 13th April 2017, 7.45pm
Tom Bellamy (Barnsley fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

This would be the third consecutive season that I have been to the DW Stadium. The corresponding fixture last season ended with Barnsley winning 4- 1 and securing a place in the League One play-offs, whilst Wigan were already crowned the League One Champions outright. However, tonights game would be in sharp contrast with Wigan being second from the bottom of the Championship and Barnsley in mid-table.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

My journey to Wigan, by car, was a slow encounter mainly due to the volume of the traffic along the motorways during the peak time of the day at around 5pm. The fixture itself was the only game being played this evening which was the Thursday before Good Friday. The reason being that because of the Easter Weekend Wigan Warriors, the Rugby League Club who also play at the DW Stadium, were due to play on Good Friday, and so the date of our fixture was agreed by all parties concerned. I eventually arrived in Wigan at around 6-30 pm and instead of going into the official car park at the ground I chose to park just off Robin Park Road which is only a few minutes away from the DW Stadium.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

I had about one hour to kill before the game and spoilt for choice in where to go. I could have popped into the Red Robin pub which I walked past on the way to the Stadium, or the 'Marquee' bar which is directly next door to the North Stand where the Away fans are housed, but I decided instead to have a 'Costa Coffee' in the Retail Park Complex opposite the Stadium.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of aw ay end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

Unlike previous seasons I was surprised to learn that once inside the Stadium the stewards allowed us to sit anywhere in the stand. I think this was due to only a few hundred Barnsley fans attending the game. This suited me fine so I sat in an aisle seat halfway up the stand with plenty of leg room and a good view of the pitch. The home fans were fairly quiet making the atmosphere a little subdued even though the few hundred Barnsley fans were singing their socks off.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.

In the first half the chances for both teams were very few and far between. Wigan had one shot on target which the Barnsley keeper tipped around the post for a corner Barnsley themselves had a shot which went just wide of the post. However, the deadlock was eventually broken just before half time when Armstrong, for Barnsley, tapped the ball home from close range after Ryan Kent saw his own shot come back off the post.

The second half had a different complexion to the game altogether, with Wigan starting the brighter of the two teams and were beginning to threaten the Barnsley goal. Then against the run of play, Ryan Kent, for Barnsley, took the Wigan defence on and hit a low shot from the edge of the area which crept into the bottom corner of the net. With a two goal cushion it looked plain sailing for Barnsley until Wigan made a substitution in bringing Nick Powell on. He made an impact immediately and opened their scoring in the 71st minute by hitting home a free kick which the Barnsley keeper could only parry the ball into the net. Within a minute of the restart Powell pounced again by tapping the ball into the net after the Barnsley keeper failed to gather the ball. Powell's hat trick was completed five minutes later when the referee awarded Wigan a penalty as he himself appeared to have been pushed by a Barnsley defender. He scored direct from the spot to make the score 3-2. Then came a disallowed goal for Barnsley which I think the referee thought their keeper had been pushed, and perhaps would have changed the outcome of the game. Credit to the Wigan players for turning the game on its head and claiming a vital three towards their Championship League survival.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away from the ground was relatively easy and no problem at all. I arrived home at about 11.30pm.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I suppose I shall remember this game for many years to come but for all the wrong reasons I'll say no more!

Wigan Athletic v Preston North End
Football Championship League
Saturday 11th February 2017, 3pm
Bob Davis (Preston North End fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

A local game and hadn't been to this stadium since around 2003 when we last played Wigan in the league which shows what different directions both clubs have been following in the last 15 years. So nice to see that we have at least achieved parity again after Wigan rejoined us in the Championship League.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

Three dads and two lads made the short journey to Wigan parking up at the Bricklayers Arms on the recommendation of a friend who is Preston supporting resident of the republic of pies. Easy parking on the other side of the canal from the busy Robin Park and DW Stadium with planned ease of getaway for after the game (more on that afterwards).

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

As mentioned went into the Bricklayers Arms for a couple of pints and had a decent chat with a group of Wigan fans who explained that Wigan had done so well last season in getting promoted by basically buying any decent player they played against in the January window. They also were surprised at how much tougher the division was on there return hence the lowly position they found themselves in.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

The DW Stadium is not a bad ground but as normal there is not much atmosphere generated by the home stands. On this occasion most of the noise was coming from the 4,700 Preston fans in attendance. The thing I noticed again was how badly the colouring of the seats seem to have faded which is something you sometimes see in some of the newer grounds, perhaps something to do with manufacturer as the seats? One thing very apparent is that the concourse is far too small for a large away following. It seems to me that they have designed this stand with rugby in mind when fans can buy a beer and take it back to the seats whereas football fans have to pile down en-masse at half time in the hope of grabbing a beer. Have to say that it was pretty shambolic under the stand at half time with a scrum for the toilets and pretty dire service in evidence at the kiosks. The fact that they run out of pies just about summed up the concourse experience.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

It was a pretty poor game to be honest with Wigan looking out of confidence and Preston underperforming based upon recent performances. The nearest either side came to scoring was went we were awarded a soft penalty. With away end about ready to to explode at the prospect of taking the lead, Hugill for Preston took the softest of penalties that the goalkeeper could have thrown his cap on. The match finished 0-0 and just about summed up the game with not much quality on show.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Can only be described as frustrating as took about 15 minutes to get out of the stadium due to our seats being near the back and in the middle of a long row. After exiting the ground everybody was corralled on the other side of the canal by the massive amount of Police on duty and then slowly led down to the only narrow bridge that crossed the canal. This lead to a lot of frustration from both Wigan and Preston fans and it took another 25 minutes to get back to the car using this route. It must be said that I can fully understand why the former Wigan chairman Dave Whelan previously complained bitterly about the Policing costs which he was meant to stump up a few years ago. Once back at the car it only took 20 minutes to get back home which was half the time it took to get from my seat to the car!

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Poor game, football ground that is more suited to Rugby fans and the over the top Policing at the end means that unless it was an important game I would probably not rush back to the DW Stadium.

Wigan Athletic v Ipswich Town
Football Championship League
Saturday 17th December 2016, 3pm
Josh Houston (Ipswich Town fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

I was looking forward to this game as Wigan were in poor form before this match so I felt we could take all three points.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

It wasn't too difficult to find the DW Stadium, although could do with some more signage though. We parked in the away supporters car park which cost £5. It was close to the ground which was convenient.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

Before the game we went to the retail area near to the stadium and had a look around the shops as there wasn't really much else around the ground. The home fans were no bother and to be honest there weren't that many about. 

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

The DW Stadium seemed quite a simple design and quite bland looking. The away concourse was quite narrow and a bit disappointing for a stadium only built in 1999.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The stewards were some of the best we've had this season, very friendly and talkative. I bought a meat and potato pie for £2.60 and it was very nice. Toilet facilities were good there was plenty of urinals etc. The stand was very steep which could be a problem for those with walking difficulties. We had plenty of leg room as well (but we weren't planning much sitting).

Ipswich defending was terrible but we got lucky early on in the game, as a result of a soft penalty decision. Brett Pitman scored this but the home side levelled before the break. After half time they scored another which angered us away fans because of the shocking defensive performance. But Pitman got another, and then 20 minutes later McGoldrick got a late winner which meant the tractor boys will be taking all three points back to Suffolk. We sang loud and proud but I did find the drummer in amongst the home fans rather awful sounding.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away from the ground wasn't too bad. We waited around for 10 minutes then set off and we were out of Wigan in no time.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

The DW Stadium lacked that feeling when you visit a stadium for the first time but it was worth the trip as we won the game.

Wigan Athletic v Newcastle United
Football Championship League
Wednesday 14th December 2016, 7:45pm
Christopher (Newcastle United fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

This was my first competitive away fixture following Newcastle United in the away end (I managed to sit amongst the home support for the Football League Cup fixture against Hull a couple of week earlier).

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

It's fairly easy, although I found my SatNav took me through some housing estates instead of more direct routes. It's also worth noting that you need to go to the car park for away fans near the stadium, but not at the stadium.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

Not many home fans were around before of after the match. They all seemed to keep themselves to themselves, though people in the area were fairly helpful in general. The Soccerdome in-between the away parking and the DW Stadium let you use the toilet facilities. The chip van outside of the away end has a decent selection and at reasonable prices. There is a few outlets nearby for food as well. Whilst we were there, there was also people selling hats, scarves, and pin badges around the stadium for both home and away fans.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

The DW Stadium is a decent ground for a medium sized club, it's possibly a bit big for the size of Wigan Athletic, but I think the rugby team play there as well who usually have a bigger following. You will likely have enough leg room (if you decide to sit), and the views are unobstructed.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Not the prettiest of games, but Newcastle ran out 2-0 winners. Our atmosphere and support was great, we sang and chanted throughout. There was little Wigan support, there were no songs or chants from the Wigan fans. The only noise from them was someone banging a drum, but for the majority of the match we out sang him and the drum which became was just background noise.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Horrible experience. At Hull the away coaches and most away fans were given Police escorts to the motorway so they never had to sit in traffic. There was no such organisation at the DW Stadium. It took until about 45 minutes after the match for the majority of our fans to even get out of the away car park. After that both sides of the road were dedicated to cars and coaches getting away, however at the end of the road there is a set of traffic lights where both lanes have to filter into One lane making the whole process pointless. A couple of roads blocked off by the Police for 20 minutes or so to get the away fans to the nearest motorway would have been better than an hour or so of gridlock. If possible I would recommend people using another car park for a quick getaway, but bare in mind the retail parks around the ground apparently have time limits and hand out fines.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Being a night time game we never really got the chance to see Wigan or even take in one of the pubs around the ground. However it was a positive result for us, there was no trouble and people appeared to be friendly with reasonable prices for food and drink. The only downside is the organisation on leaving the stadium car parks, after the match had ended.

Wigan Athletic v Derby County
Football Championship League
Saturday 3rd December 2016, 3pm
Andrew Keay (Derby County fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

I have been to the DW Stadium before and found it to be a good day out. Also it is easy ground for me to get to as I live in Stoke.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I very easy. I drove up the M6, joining at Junction 15 and getting off at Junction 25. From there it is about a ten minute drive to the DW Stadium. As you approach the stadium, turn left by the Pizza Hut and there is plenty of street parking to be found. From this area it is also very easy to get away after the match too.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

From where I parked it was a case of just crossing the road to get to a nice pub called the Red Robin. This is only about two minutes walk away from the DW and welcomes away fans. The pub also serves food, so we had a nice lunch and a couple of drinks. We then went for a wander around the small retail park located next to the ground.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

The DW Stadium is modern but lacks. Inside the concourse is ample with plenty of food and drink kiosks and I must say the toilets are probably the cleanest and nicest of any away ground I've ever seen. The stands are quite steep and the seats a bit tight but the view is excellent.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game was no classic. Derby won 1-0, but only because Wigan were so poor. The stewards were helpful and pleasant. Not the usual controlling freaks you get at some games. Overall the stadium lacked atmosphere. This was mainly down to the lack of home support and the numbers of empty seats everywhere.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Getting away was easy from where we parked. Within five minutes of leaving the stadium, we were back at the car and en route. I did note as we walked by that traffic trying to leave the official car parks seemed manic. There was a bit of congestion up to the M6 as you would expect, but we were back home in about an hour so I can't complain. 

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Again a visit to the DW Stadium proved to be another good trip, with a nice pub and a friendly atmosphere. Plus three points too so all and all enjoyable

Wigan Athletic v Derby County
Football Championship League
Saturday 3rd December 2016, 3pm
Martin Plummer (Derby County fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

Derby were hitting a run of form and I found myself travelling to more away games this season. I had never been to the DW Stadium or indeed Wigan before.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I went by train and arrived at Wigan North Western. It was about a 15 minute walk to the DW Stadium, which wasn't very well signposted, but I found it by simply following the other supporters!

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

I arrived at the ground about an hour before kick off and went into the "Marquee pub" for a Pint. It had no television, but I still found it a nice gesture from Wigan to make an away pub at the stadium.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

I found the DW Stadium a bit lacking in character and a bit boxy. However it was a neat functional ground with a nice rake on the stands. I did however find that the concourse was a bit of a squeeze for the large  travelling support.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The atmosphere was mainly generated by the away support, although the home fans did get their voice together when Will Grigg was introduced in the second half. The game itself was a bit dull, Derby took the lead through a Bradley Johnson header in the first half and held on to it for the rest of the game.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the match:

We walked away from the ground the same way as we came, and found that a section of it was unlit making it impossible to see and leading to a few people falling over. We did however make it back to the railway station were the locals were very helpful.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

The DW Stadium wasn't the best away trip I've ever been on, but it was by no means bad, and a win is a win.

Wigan Athletic v Barnsley
Football League One
Sunday 8th May 2016, 12.30pm
Tom Bellamy (Barnsley fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?

This was the final league game of the season for both teams. Wigan were already the league champions and Barnsley needed a good result to remain in the play-offs. This would be my second time to the DW Stadium, and I knew it was a good ground.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I decided to take the car this time around having been on the supporters bus before. It was very easy to find and well signposted. I managed to park at the stadium itself at a cost of £5.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

There is a bar beside the away end turnstiles called The Marquee, which serves everything from beer and lager to tea and coffees plus various refreshments. There were stewards on the door who were very pleasant and helpful.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

I was very impressed with the DW Stadium. It's a good size, but so it should be with Wigan being an ex - Premier/Championship side.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

It was a great game from a Barnsley point of view coming out 4-1 winners, and making the play-offs. I suppose Wigan could have played better but they had nothing to play for having been crowned champions.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

It was very easy getting away from the ground but perhaps that was because the match was played on a Sunday instead of Saturday, so there was only the football traffic to worry about, not the Saturday shoppers.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

It was a fantastic day out and one which will remain in my memory for a long time.

Wigan Athletic v Shewsbury Town
Football League One
Saturday 21st November 2015, 3pm
Gareth King (Neutral fan) 

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?    

This was to be the first time that I had seen a game played outside Scotland. Plus as we were visiting Wigan I was interested to attend a match and see the stadium.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?    

Trains to Wigan seem pretty straightforward on the West Coast Mainline (can speak for other directions), but after that it's a bit of a trek from the town centre to the ground, deceptively longer than you'd think (especially on a cold day!) - I foolishly went to the ground via Miry Lane, crossing the footbridge. But, leaving and heading back through the retail park at Robin Park is a lot easier.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?    

Faffed about in a shopping centre with my other half, visiting the Wigan Warriors giftshop and getting my toddler a Warriors top for less than a fiver!

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?    

For a smallish ground, it feels a lot bigger. the stands have a decent rake, meaning they are both not too steep and still raising you up enough to get a super view.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..    

The atmosphere was alright for the level of game (having been to Old Firm games in my time, I appreciate it's all relative) and the stewarding was pretty friendly. I have at times an irritable bowel, so toilets at grounds are a big thing for me - The facilities at the DW were super. As for the game then it was tight with Wigan winning by the only goal of the match.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Crowds flow out easily enough, though you take your life in your hands at the point where the nearby Asda supermarket car park meets the main road!

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

I was pretty impressed with the DW Stadium and the club and would say it's worth dropping in if in the area.

 

Wigan Athletic v Bury
League Cup 1st Round
Tuesday 11th August 2015, 7.45pm
Malcolm Parr (Bury fan)

Why you were looking forward to going to the DW Stadium?

This was my first visit to the DW Stadium for a number of years. I was looking forward to seeing how we dealt with the challenge of playing against a team who were two divisions higher than us last season.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?    

The ground isn't easy to find. I would advise travelling fans to give themselves plenty of time. Follow the signs for Robin Park. The stadium car parks aren't well-signposted but there is ample space.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?    

I walked around the vast retail park for a while. There are several food outlets which provide a cheaper alternative to the catering within the stadium. There was no visible animosity between supporters before the game.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the stadium?

The DW Stadium is large, functional and characterless. The away stand is situated behind one goal. Like the other stands, it is very steep - it may cause difficulties for fans with balance problems. There is ample leg room. The stand behind the opposing goal mirrored ours. The Main Stand was situated to our right. It contained corporate facilities. The stand to our left accommodated the noisier Wiganers. There is little to distinguish one stand from another.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..    

League Cup games are usually low-key affairs. However, this game was played at a high tempo. Wigan took a deserved lead immediately after half-time but a couple of substitutions changed the balance of the game and led to our equalizer. We won the game via a last-minute penalty. There was an adequate atmosphere but the crowd of 5,600 (including 1500 Shakers fans) wasn't large enough to generate a lot of noise. Stewarding was low-key and friendly. The facilities were modern, clean and well-maintained.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

I was able to get away from the ground fairly quickly. However, there is only one road out of the complex and I suspect it will become very congested when a large crowd is in attendance.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day for us. We have an appalling record in cup competitions so any win is welcomed. The DW Stadium needs big crowds to make it into a notable venue.

Wigan Athletic v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Championship League
Saturday 25th April 2015, 3pm
Aimee Henry (Wolves fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the DW Stadium?

It was our last away game of what’s been a really enjoyable season. Just one point from the last three games, came just at the wrong time and had dealt a crushing blow to our Play-Off hopes, so much so that 3 points away at relegation threatened Wigan was a must, and even then may not be enough, depending on other results. The week in the build up to the game had been significant, as Rotherham had been docked 3 points, dragging Wigan right back into the fight for survival. The last time we visited the DW Stadium, we had been relegated from the Premier League, and the Wigan supporters were very keen to rub it in. It led to a brilliant moment at full time, when a lone Wolves fan ran onto the pitch, scattering about 200 Wigan fans (look it up on Youtube). 

View Of The DW Stadium From The Nearby Retail Park

DW Stadium Viewed From Nearby Retail Park

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

We decided to go on the train for this one, securing return tickets from Wolverhampton to Wigan North Western for £12. The journey, via Crewe and Warrington, took just over an hour, meaning we were in Wigan for just after half eleven. The ground is a 15-20 minute walk from the station. Turn left as you leave the station, underneath a bridge, and follow that road along, past… until you reach an Asda on your right. Go right at the Asda, and you should be able to see the DW Stadium behind a retail park. 

DW Stadium Main Reception

DW Stadium Main Reception

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Firstly we stopped at Burger King, and there was a good mix of home and away supporters in there already. After that we made our way to the Red Robin pub, which was located no more than 2 or 3 minutes away from the stadium. It was jam packed full of Wolves supporters, as well as the Punjabi Wolves group, and the atmosphere was rocking. I went across to the stadium at about 1, as I was keen to greet the players off the coach. The home and away supporters were mingling, with no animosity, despite the amount that was riding on the fixture. 

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?

Like a number of stadiums in the Football League, the design of the ground follows a theme in all four stands, so there are few distinct features. The away end is the North Stand, behind the goal. The away fans are given the entire stand, and with it being the final away game of the season, it was full. Some had even arrived resplendent in fancy dress. I felt the 1990s flash before me as the Power Rangers, Buzz Lightyear and Spongebob all walked past to take their seats for the game. The South Stand opposite is pretty much identical to the North, and similarly, the East and West stands are identical, save for a scoreboard adorning the East Stand.

South Stand

South Stand

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Wigan came out of the blocks quicker, and former Wolves loanee Jermaine Pennant (he of the Electronic Tag) forced deputising keeper Tomasz Kuszczak into a fine save, the Pole pushing a fierce drive over the bar. The majestically named Gaetan Bong was having an influential game for the Latics, capitalising on the lack of width on the Wolves right to maraud forward whenever possible. Fortunately, Wolves had Dominic Iorfa at right back, who was coping admirably. It was with Wolves’ first attack of the game that we took the lead. Scott Golbourne found space on the left, but was brought crashing down by Emmerson Boyce, who was booked. Bakary Sako fizzed in a scorcher of a free kick right onto the head of the prolific Benik Afobe, who scored his 13th Wolves goal in just his 20th appearance. James McClean was having a lively game for the hosts, and he found room on the edge of the area, having wriggled away from Ethan Ebanks-Landell. His shot was wayward though. The final action of the half saw Pennant scoop a free kick a good 10 yards over the bar, much to the travelling fans’ delight. 

Wigan again started the half brightly, with McClean twice firing wide from inside the area, whilst at the other end, Afobe thought he had doubled his and Wolves’ tally, only to be denied by a handball decision. Wolves really put a spell of pressure together then, with Wigan’s Scott Carson reacting superbly to flick Dave Edwards’ header over the bar. Kevin McDonald broke forward and curled a low effort towards goal, but straight at Carson. Wigan thought they had equalised, only to have their celebrations cut short by the linesman’s (sorry, assistant referee’s) offside flag. The final action of the game saw McClean receive a second yellow card, following a late clattering of Richard Stearman, who was outstanding for Wolves. The full time whistle was greeted by cheers from the away end, and a general shrug from the home end, many of whom decided to leave, despite the man on the Tannoy pleading with them to stay for “a lap of appreciation”. Clearly the Latics fans didn’t feel there was much to appreciate about their season.

West Stand

West Stand

The home atmosphere did feel a little flat, and just from looking, I would say the home ends were only half full. There was a group of rowdy Wiganers congregated in the East Stand, exchanging pleasentries with the Wolves fans. The respective League positions meant the away fans held all the aces though, and a chant of “You laughed at us, when we went down. But who the (bleep) is laughing now?” got several airings during the game. 

The stewards were very friendly, and I had a beautiful Steak Pie for £2.40. The programme was the standard £3, and included a feature which had been running on twitter throughout the week, in which Wolves fans were asked to name their all-time Wolves 5-a-side team. My fellow supporters came up with a team of Matt Murray, Billy Wright, Paul Ince, Alex Rae and Steve Bull. Not too shabby…

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Straightforward back to the train station, and a simple journey back to Wolverhampton. 

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

The DW Stadium is generally a nice stadium, if a little bit bland, and the great swathes of empty seats obviously doesn’t help the atmosphere. But, having experienced League One last season, the DW will provide one of the better experiences for visiting fans next season. The ticket prices were very fair, the away allocation very generous, and the ground’s proximity to the town centre is certainly a lot better than some. 

Wigan Athletic v Leeds United
Championship League
Saturday 7th March 2015, 3pm
Allan Caley (Leeds United fan)

Why you were looking forward to going to the ground?

I had never been to the DW Stadium before, so it would be a new ground to visit and another on my tally of watching Leeds around the country.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

It was a three hour car journey from my home in East Lincolnshire. I found a quiet street to park in near to the DW Stadium (near the Fire Station) about a ten minute walk away. I had no problems in finding the ground.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?

We went into the Red Robin, a Fayre & Square pub that is just a couple of minutes from the stadium. Beers cost about £3 a pint. There were a few home fans in there who seemed friendly enough, along with a fair few from Leeds. There was no trouble at all before, during or after the game. Dave Whelan though in his pre-match retirement speech did seem to wind up most of the 4,700 Leeds fans in attendance.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

It is a pretty good looking ground. All four sides of the stadium have a very similar look to them. The away end is identical to the home end, but the home end was virtually empty (only 11,500 home fans in the whole ground). The away end was sold out after a week, but there were still about 700 seats kept empty in our end for 'safety reasons' - which is quite baffling really.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The first half was fairly even and the half time score remained goalless. Leeds scored 6 minutes into the second half and from then on it was just about one way traffic towards the Leeds goal for the rest of the game. How Wigan didn't get an equalizer was beyond me; they certainly deserved one, but it ended 0-1 and we went home with three points! In spite of the poor attendance by the home support there was a couple of thousand Wigan fans accompanied by a drummer-boy ("We're Leeds United, we don't need a drum") who made a decent amount of noise throughout the match. The Leeds fans made their usual amount of racquet throughout the whole game. As for the stewards, well, even though I was right on the front row you barely knew they were there at any time during the match. So a job well done to the DW Stadium Stewards. I didn't buy any food items; the queues were quite long at half time so didn't bother. Toilets: there was no problem getting to the toilets at any time, even during the half-time interval. There was no queuing at all.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game

The only reason I can imagine that Wigan refuses to sell tickets for all the seats in the away end, is that it took over 5 minutes to empty after the game had ended (or it would have taken me at least that long if I hadn't done a hop, step and a jump over the rows of seats to make my exit). But it takes no longer than 5 minutes to totally empty the Gelderd End at Elland Road; so I don't see why this might be an issue at the DW. It was then a quick walk back to the car and was on the M6 after about 10 minutes and was back home by 8pm

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out A great day out:

I will do it again next season, if Wigan are in the Championship again next season!

Wigan Athletic v Leeds United
Championship League 
Saturday, April 5th 2014, 12.30pm
Josh Grainger (Leeds United fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

It was probably going to be my last away day of the season so that was the main reason for my excitement. I'd never been to Wigan before so was looking forward to seeing another new ground, as well as seeing the 4,000 or so Leeds fans making a racket. 

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I got the train from Leeds to Manchester Piccadilly and then from there to Wigan Wallgate. From the station, it took about a 20 minute walk to get to the ground, which is fairly easy to find thanks to signposts. 

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

I'd heard that one of Wigan's specialties was a "Pie Butty" so I was keen to try it, however I was disappointed to find out the chippy right next to the away end was closed for some unknown reason. The Leeds fans were given a bar underneath the away end called "The Marquee" to drink in before the game. It was very posh inside and had tele's and the such. To be honest on the walk to and around the ground there seemed to be more Leeds fans than home one's, but those we came across just minded their own business. 

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

I'd seen the ground on tele before so knew what to expect, and wasn't too surprised when I got there. A plain looking stadium, which has four separate stands all the same height and empty corners which lets the atmosphere escape in my opinion. The away end was standard really, the concourse really should be made bigger as at half time even the stewards couldn't move in it. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Leeds lost the game 1-0, but in a dull run of form it was one of the better performances we've shown. The atmosphere was poor in the home end, excluding one block next to the Leeds fans who had a drum. Stewards were as friendly as can be expected. 

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

The Leeds fans weren't kept behind, so the walk back to the station was quite crowded, but nothing out of the ordinary. The train back was the funnest part of the day, after discovering Cellino's takeover had gone through, Leeds fans were in good spirits and once we returned to Manchester for the next train, we took the opportunity to tell the station what we thought of the Red side of the city.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A good day out, but strikes me as one of the away days that suits teams with large followings, if there had only be 300 or so away fans, then it wouldn't be much fun. 

Wigan Athletic v Bolton Wanderers
Championship League
Saturday, December 15th 2013, 3pm
Cameron Ormerod (Bolton fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

I was looking forward to this game, predominantly because Wigan are our local rivals and fixtures between the two clubs have recently been 'hotting up'.  

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking? 

We got off the train at Wigan Wallgate and followed the rest of the Bolton fans. We took a short cut alongside a canal and we found the ground easily. The walk was around 20 minute so it was fairly short.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

There was a chippy near the stadium, however the queue was huge so we didn't go in, we just went straight onto the ground. The police obviously wanted us in the away end quickly because they were hassling us about not getting into trouble, which was a bit annoying, but it's what you expect on a local derby.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The ground it's self is not too impressive, but by Championship standards it's good. Nothing to write home about really. The away end is just one tier but it's quite high up and I sat right near the back. I prefer the single tier stands because it feels like you're all together in a huge group. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc.. 

We lost the game 3-2. First half performance was shocking so we deserved it really. The Bolton fans were in full voice (until Wigan's second) and there was a corner on the left hand side of the away end where some Wigan fans congregated and sang, the rest were quiet, there was plenty of banter between us and that corner though. However there were some missiles thrown and lots of smoke bombs let off in both stands and a few fans from both teams were ejected which made the atmosphere quite hostile.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game: 

We got a police escort from the ground to the station and because trains between Bolton and Wigan are normally comprised of two carriages we had to wait for a bit whilst they added some more carriages to the train, as there was about 1,500 bolton fans waiting. I encountered no problems but I did hear a lot of police sirens so I guess there was some post-match hostilities somewhere in Wigan.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

In conclusion, it was a good day out but unfortunately it was not a good game.

Wigan Athletic v Middlesbrough
Championship League
Sunday, August 25th 2013, 3pm
Alex Royal (Middlesbrough fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

I was looking forward to the game as it was a relatively cheap away. (For me, at least, aged 17!) Also Wigan had just been relegated from the premier league, so I thought that I would go along to the DW to cheer on the Boro, one of the other reasons i went was because the tickets were very reasonably priced. £5 for under 16's, £10 For 16-18's, full time students and over 65's. Adults were £15. 

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

As I got the club bus there, I didn’t have to worry about finding parking, the ground was well signposted, the first sign being just before the turnoff for Wigan on the M62. The coach parked in a car park about a 500 yards walk from the ground, a quick walk. although the home fans recommend getting the bus from the stations as the ground is quite a way out of town. 

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly? 

As I do every away game, I buy a beanie hat or a cap from the club shop, it’s sort of my memento to say ‘I’ve been to that ground'. After that, i bought my programme from a seller, who turned out to be very chatty and jolly, which i thought was nice.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

The away end was situated in the North Stand. Providing a good view of the action behind the goal. Middlesbrough were attacking the south end in the 1st half. so in the second half, I had a brilliant view of Boro's second goal.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Overall, I thought that it was a thoroughly enjoyable game, end-to-end. It ended in a 2-2 draw, which was a fair result. The stewards were very friendly, they didn’t mind where you sat, it was a ‘sit anywhere’ policy; which was nice. In the first half I sat near the back, whereas for the second half, I got to the front row. The catering facilities were very good, with a pie costing around £2 reasonably priced too, although this is expected for a modern ground.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

There was a large police presence in the away end, after the game, the fans were escorted by police back to the coaches. Smooth journey back to Teesside.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Very enjoyable day out, reasonably priced tickets and coach travel. Great away day. 

Wigan Athletic v Newcastle United
Premier League
Sunday, March 17th 2013, 4pm
Matthew Jackson (Newcastle United fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

It is always good to be going away with all the true fans, so was I was looking forward to another good away day. I was however unsure about the stadium and area and how it would accommodate for the vast number of Newcastle fans that would be attending. 

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The journey was fine. Motorway then dual carriageway all the way till you hit Wigan wheres its pretty straight forward and well sign posted to the DW Stadium. Parking is a little more difficult as they wouldn't let us park in the retail park next to the stadium so we parked on a side road instead. Somehow we missed the away fans car park at the stadium itself.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Good pub next to the ground where the fans mingled and the Geordies filled out. Since the stadium is located next to a retail park, there are lots of eating places including a chippy, so plenty of opportunities for food. Home fans were no trouble.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

It is a modern ground, so lacked character, especially when you compare it to older ones in the League. Decent looking though once you get to your seat. However half time was a bit of a nightmare when going to the toilet. The concourse area under the stand was packed with people and there was a danger that some people could get crushed. Luckily no one was hurt, but a number of fans complained to the stewards about this, saying its dangerous. 

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Shocking game, Ref was terrible, Enough said there. There was a lack of atmosphere from the home supporters except a small section of home fans who had an annoying drum, however the Newcastle fans created a great atmosphere. Stewards were not too bad, there was the odd cocky one as always. Pies were decent and the prices were okay. Toilets locations were a joke as explained above at half time. 

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Was easy to get as everyone had the same objective of leaving the ground. 

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Decent away day, terrible game, average atmosphere, large police numbers outside checking every away fan. Possibility of being dangerous underneath the stands. Would return, but only to see NUFC and not the ground again. 

Wigan Athletic v Liverpool
Premier League
Saturday 2nd March 2013, 5.30pm
Rob Lawler (Liverpool fan)

Why were you looking forward to this game and visiting the DW Stadium?    

I had been to the DW Stadium previously in 2009 when Liverpool were chasing the Premier League title but threw it away when Lucas gave away a late penalty. As I had not had a chance to go to many games this season I jumped at the chance when I was offered two spare tickets.

How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?    

Wigan is not that far from Liverpool so I drove, I picked my friend up in Maghull and then it is a straight drive on the M58. The stadium is easy to get to as there only seems to be one road into Wigan and I parked in a nearby retail park. A lot of the lads I know went by train. Wigan has trains from Lime Street and Kirkby which arrive at two separate train stations separated by one street. I have been to Wigan town centre a few times before and there are several decent pubs on the main road where the stations are. Most notably and closely one called the Railway.

What you did before the game pub/chippy etc, and were the home fans friendly?    

We bought some food from Morrisons in Maghull and ate it on the way. We parked straight up and then went into the ground. The home fans were fairly friendly and there were lots of families there. At the time Wigan's season tickets were fairly cheap and I have known two Liverpool and Everton fans who have bought them simply to buy more tickets when their teams play Wigan. Wigan, first and foremost is a rugby town so interest in football is not what it would be in most English cities. I have never seen the ground full but you have to remember they were in the lower leagues for a long time before their meteoric rise and famous FA Cup win.

What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the DW Stadium?    

The DW Stadium is decent, some people may call it a "flat pack" stadium but I think it is a fair size and has good facilities. The Liverpool following was loud and noisy and our stand behind the goal was full, the stand is a bit steep and gives you the impression that you are in a bigger stadium. The concourse is a good size and has big screens showing Sky Sports. I like that there are barriers to make people queue up for their food and drink. It always annoys me when you wait a long time at the bar only for someone to shove in front of you or the person serving you forgets who was next. Me and my mate said it was like queuing up at Alton Towers.

Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..    

The home fans were fairly subdued as Liverpool scored in the first few minutes and Liverpool were 3-0 up at half time. The place had a few empty seats. Wigan fans started the usual "sign on" chants but Liverpool fans retorted with "you're just a town full of inbreds" and then that was the end of the epic banter and Liverpool fans carried on singing their own songs. We ended up winning 4-0 with Luis Suarez scoring a hat trick.

Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Was fairly easy and straightforward as we parked in the retail park. Hardest part was getting out of Wigan but once on the motorway it only took 30 minutes to get back to Maghull.

Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

A brilliant win and a much better game than my last visit. Wigan is a very accessible away game and one that I very much enjoyed.

Wigan Athletic v Sunderland
Premier League   
Saturday, January 19th 2013, 3pm 
Chris Henry (Sunderland fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

Sunderland always take a good away crowd to most places so I was looking forward to a good day out with a good atmosphere. Wigan is also our second closest away day after Newcastle so this could almost technically be seen as a derby clash! I have been to the DW once before in 2007 (3-0 defeat) and was looking forward to seeing us win there having been on a decent run in the league. Lancashire away days are always days I look forward to.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

The weather conditions weren't great with heavy snow in the North East during the week, we went down by mini bus and got to Wigan at 1pm.  Had a pint in a local pub 10 minutes from the DW then back onto the minibus where we accidentally parked at a fire station! We were obviously moved on but ended up parking the bus next to the chippy behind the away end! 

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

Had a few pints 10 minutes from the DW, can't remember the places name but was friendly and welcoming. Didn't really interact with many home fans with us getting to the ground at 2.50pm. With something that happens at most away grounds, the home fans closest to the away end tend to make suggestive gestures in the direction of the visiting supporters. Wigan was no differente but I'd never take this as a reflection on all the fans!

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

On my previous visit I wasn't that impressed with the DW, this visit done nothing to change my mind. It's a decent looking stadium, your bog standard new ground with four sides surrounded by a soulless retail park with no pubs. The concourses are very cramped and unorganised, especially with 5,000 away fans there, in this day and age I really don't think you should have to push and force yourself to get to where you want to be. One other slight grievance I had was the match ticket had the wrong access gate printed on it.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

Game was good, Sunderland were 3-1 up at half time. We made difficult work of it in the second half but scraped the 3-2 win. Atmosphere from the away end was superb, didn't have any interaction with the stewards other than asking for directions to my seat, they didn't seem to be bothered we were standing the whole game. I'd read a lot about the Wigan pies beforehand, reviews saying they were some of the best in the country but I have to admit I was disappointed. The Pooles steak pie was pretty tasteless. The queues on the concourse were huge, service was slow and it took me nearly the whole of half time to get served. The kiosk wasn't very well placed from the area of the ground I was sitting in.

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

After some misinformation on where our bus was now, we eventually got to it. We left when the crowd around us cleared but still took us 10 minutes or so to get out of the DW area.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

The DW has it's issues but that's unlikely to change. Wigan away is a good day out like most Lancashire away days, Wigan are a credit to the Premier and they would be missed if they were relegated.

 

Wigan Athletic v Sunderland
Premier League
Saturday, January 19th 2013, 3pm
Matty Atkinson (Sunderland fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be):

This was to be my first away game, so I was very excited about it. Wigan is one of the shorter distances from Sunderland so it was not such a long journey. I knew that I was going to enjoy it and had been looking forward to it all week. I know Sunderland take big followings everywhere and after hearing that we sold out 5000 tickets within days of going on sale i knew it would be a great atmosphere well at least in the away stand!

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking?

I left a very snowy north east at 9am on a supporters coach arranged by the Love Supreme fanzine. It was a bit slow getting out of the north east but when we got past Scotch Corner we were soon flying and we made it to the DW two hours before kick off! The parking was easy a very big away car park. On the plus side with my coach being there first we parked near the exit so got away after the game in minutes unlike other coaches that quite a bit of time to get out. 

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

When I got off the coach did not really know where to go and followed the crowd of Sunderland fans and ended up in the DW Sports Bar for a few drinks. After that we went in to the Marquee Bar by the away entrance, The Marquee Bar is actually part of the stadium and I thought that this was a great feature of the stadium. Did not really talk to or interact with any of the home fans except for a few choice words after the game when a few Wigan fans decided to throw snowballs at the coach!

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground?

To be honest I thought the ground was going to be better as it is a modern stadium, and it was a very 'bog standard' ground with four separate stands. The only thing that stood out for me from the stadium was the Marquee, simply because not a lot of the other grounds have a place such as this for away fans only to go to. 

Entrance To The Marquee Bar

Marquee Bar Entrance DW Stadium

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, facilities etc..

The game was great, with Sunderland being 3-1 up at half time. It was a bit nervy in the second half with Wigan getting a goal back, but we managed to hold on for a 3-2 win. The atmosphere from the Sunderland fans was great, singing for the whole game. The Wigan fans who only sang when they scored and that was only from a small group who also possessed a very annoying drum. The stewards were very laid off and let us stand the game with out any problem. They searched my bag on the way in but that is what you expect. 

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game:

Very easy and quick as the coach parked at front of car park straight home no traffic. 

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out:

Great day out recommend this to any football fan, great day out great atmosphere and a good laugh. 

Why not write your own review of the DW Stadium Wigan and have it included in the Guide? Find out more about submitting a Fans Football Ground Review.

Updated 21st July 2018

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