Latics prepare for Saturday’s game against Queens Park Rangers with seven players missing but, Emmerson Boyce says the team has the current situation under control.
“It is a big strain on the squad to have injuries and suspensions, but there are players waiting and fighting to get their chance and I’m sure whoever comes in will be ready,” said the 33-year-old.
“We had four central defenders to fit into three places at the start of the season and now all four are unavailable for the weekend, it is quite a rare situation.
“Everybody has to take responsibility now more than ever and everyone has to rely on each other to play the way we like to.
“When you’re playing you forget how young players like the two James’ are because they’ve been turning in consistent performances for the Club year-on-year.
“To have Premier League experience like that to call on when we’ve got other players out is something that can see us through the next set of fixtures.”
Boyce was called upon to move from his right wing back role into the centre of defence on Monday against Newcastle United, a familiar position in his career.
“I’m enjoying the responsibility in the team and luckily playing centre back is something I’ve done a lot through my career, and I started my career in that position for Luton Town.
“Against Newcastle we were down to 10 men and in the second half it felt very comfortable to play in terms of passing and keeping the ball which is something we need to be able to do in every game.
“It’s going to be a hard test on Saturday because QPR will be looking for the points and we will have to be at our best in all positions to get a positive result.
“It will be a test on Saturday but, I’m sure it will be one that we can handle.”