Wigan’s push for a play-off place received a setback when they were held to a goalless draw at Middlesbrough tonight.
In a scrappy game with few clear-cut chances for either team, the Latics failed to recreate the form that had knocked out Crystal Palace in the FA Cup at the weekend.
Despite the dropped points the Wigan manager will at least feel it was an improved performance from their recent away defeat at Doncaster.
Rösler made four changes to the team that had won at the weekend with Stephen Crainey, Chris McCann, Nick Powell and Marc-Antoine Fortune coming into the starting line-up.
In windy conditions Wigan had the better of the opening period with McCann having his shot deflected just wide of the post.
The away team were having the majority of possession, but Boro threatened on the break and almost scored on 28 minutes when Mustapha Carayol’s low shot from the edge of the area whistled wide of Al Habsi’s post.
A disappointing half ended with Middlesbrough’s Rhys Williams stretchered off with what looked like a back injury.
The second period continued in a similar vein to the first with both teams giving away possession too easily and wasting free kick opportunities.
Wigan made a double substitution on 60 minutes with James McLean replacing Fortune and James McArthur coming on for Watson.
On 64 minutes the home team had a great chance to take the lead when Carayol broke down the left to send Ledesma into the box and he pulled the ball back to Curtis Main but his shot was scooped over from eight yards out.
Wigan responded on 69 minutes when McClean pushed forward and fired over from 20 yards, and they could have grabbed the lead on 76 minutes when Stephen Crainey produced a stinging shot which took a slight deflection but was well saved by Shay Given.
Latics continued to press in the final minutes and forced a series of corners, but their best chance came when Powell got onto a Jean Beausejour cross but headed over the bar.
Neither team probably deserved to take all three points and in the final analysis an away point for the Latics may prove to be a good result against Aitor Karanka’s team, who have only lost one of their past 12 home games in the Championship.
Both teams are now locked together in mid table with 37 points, although Latics have two games in hand on Boro, and are only seven points behind sixth place Reading.