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The Latics boss backs his squad following controversy over photographs of players relaxing in the sun, insisting that their break in Spain was "very positive" and "professional"

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez has defended his players' professionalism, having taken his side to Spain to endure warm-weather training sessions.

Photographs that emerged on Twitter created a storm among some fans when they appeared to show players of the club lounging by a pool but, following a statement from captain Gary Caldwell highlighting the team's commitment to avoiding relegation, the Latics boss insists that his charges are "very professional".

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"I understand that certain pictures can send the wrong message but the players were very professional," Martinez told reporters.

"They took advantage of being together for such a long period and we worked a lot more than we would have done here because of the weather.

"The players and the captain especially were quick to come out and apologise if there was any wrong message sent to the fans."

This is not the first time that Martinez has taken his Wigan side abroad for training camps, with destinations such as Oman and La Manga previously on their list, and the former Swansea City boss feels that the positives are clear.

“The benefits we have had over the years have been massive," he added. "They have some time to rest, as you would imagine, and if you can do that with a bit of sun, it really helps the bodies.

"Overall, it was a very positive time, not just for the group dynamics but also with the work we put in. It is going to give us a real good focus for the final third of the season."

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