Wigan Athletic’s nightmare season shows no sign of abating after yet another defeat this time at the hands of Nottingham Forest.
Forest rarely needed to get out of second gear to comfortably win 3-0 against a Latics team which now looks destined for League One.
Striker Britt Assombalonga slotted home Chris Burke’s through-ball to put Forest ahead after 33 minutes.
Forest increased their lead after the interval when Michail Antonio found Burke, who blasted home off the post.
Henri Lansbury then added a third when he curled in from the edge of the box, but in truth it could have been so many more if the home team had pressed home their advantage.
Malky Mackay made one change to his starting line-up from the team defeated by Bournemouth, with James Perch coming in for the injured Chris McCann. Chris Herd, who deputised at right-back for Perch against Bournemouth, came into midfield.
Forest could have been ahead as early as the 4th minute when Assombalonga laid the ball to Chris Burke. His deep cross reached Michail Antonio but the header was fortunately wide of Ali Al-Habsi’s post.
Latics rarely threatened the Forest goal, but Kim did manage to test the home keeper Karl Darlow with a long-range effort on 2o minutes.
But Forest went ahead on 33 minutes when Burke was allowed far too much room by Herd in the centre of midfield and he played in Assombalonga on the right side of the box, and the striker coolly finished low past Al-Habsi.
Latics tried to respond, but with Leon Clarke isolated upfront, none of their attacks came to anything.
The home team went into the interval one nil ahead, and with Latics lacking any real attacking threat, they realised the game was theirs for the taking.
When Andrew Taylor pushed forward down the left and Latics lost possession a quick break meant they were short at the back. Antonio chipped a long ball to the unmarked Burke, who had plenty of time to set himself and fire past a helpless Al-Habsi in off the far post.
Somewhat bizzarely Latics most creative player Kim was then withdrawn by Mackay and replaced by Sheyi Ojo.
Forest went further ahead on 61 minutes. Henri Lansbury was given far too much room on the edge of the area and the former Arsenal midfielder curled the ball past Al-Habsi.
Martyn Waghorn replaced Herd but Latics rarely looked like they had the movement or imagination to create a decent goal scoring opportunity.
Their only real chance came late on when McClean forced a good save from Darlow when Ojo had put him through.
Forest in comparison created plenty of opportunities and really should have had more than the three goals. The only real downside for the home team was a late injury to Assombalonga who was carried off on a stretcher.
It was a dispiriting performance by Latics who had appeared to be showing some signs of promise in the last home game against Bournemouth. The players now seem to have lost belief and there was a noticeable lack of organisation and any cohesion had disappeared.
Mackay’s tactics of playing a lone striker is clearly not working, and with wins vital for any chance of survival, playing for a draw is not an option.
The manager has had little, if any, positive impact since taking over and despite a massive turnover in players during the transfer window the situation is getting worse. The club is now eight points adrift of safety with only 16 games remaining.