Chairman Whelan is the driving force behind Wigan, insists Martinez

The manager believes a strong bond with owner benefits the team and talks up importance of the game against Swansea, where he hopes to grab three points against his former club

Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has spoken of his close relationship with club chairman Dave Whelan, insisting that it is the driving force behind the club.

Martinez has been in charge at the DW Stadium since 2009, during which he has guided his side to Premier League safety in the face of relegation on more than one occasion.

And the Spanish coach has enjoyed a fruitful partnership with his employer during the three-year period, despite past speculation linking him to both Aston Villa and Liverpool and a public hammering from Whelan after defeat to Martinez’s former club Swansea last season.

"My relationship with the chairman never changes,” Martinez told reporters, “Probably that's the biggest strength that we've got in the football club.

"My chairman is a football man; he knows what happens during a football season. Probably that moment [after the Swansea match] went out of context because everyone expected a Monday meeting between the chairman and the manager, something we do every week, so for me it wasn't a change.

"Probably from the outside he gave a perception that it was completely different. We're here to win football games, to make sure the players enjoy their football and to progress as a club, and that will never change."

Wigan return to the Liberty Stadium to face Swansea again this weekend in a potential relegation six-pointer and Martinez is under no illusions about how vital the game could prove to be.

He said: "The game is so important for both clubs. We are both in the league that we want to be, these are fantastic times for both clubs.

"After a great start to the season, we both find ourselves in a situation where we need the points, we both need good performances. I don't think the individual links are important any more, it's just the importance of the game."

"Any game at the Liberty Stadium is very tough because Swansea are good at what they do. The way they treat the ball, the way they control games and keep possession, it's very difficult for the opposing side.

The 39-year-old also believes his opposite number Michael Laudrup will go on to enjoy a successful season despite a recent dip in form and insists that both teams are in for a tightly fought affair.

Martinez continued: "I don't see it as the right time to play them, it's a moment of need, both teams are in a similar situation and it's going to be a really entertaining game because the concepts of both sides are very similar.”

"I think Michael Laudrup is very clear in what he wants to do, he brought in players that had an impact straight away, and that group of players is getting ready to have a very good season.

"The first three games they were a joy to watch and a real attacking threat. I don't think much has changed, they had a couple of injuries, a couple of suspensions, and that affected a little bit their results, but they haven't changed as a team.”