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The Spaniard is keen for the 76-year-old to banish past demons after he suffered a double leg break during the 1960 competition showpiece while playing for Blackburn

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez has confirmed club owner Dave Whelan will lead the Latics out at the FA Cup final following Saturday’s semi-final triumph over Millwall.

Whelan was part of the Blackburn side who lost in the famous competition’s showpiece to Wolves in 1960, but he was unable to make a telling contribution after breaking his leg in two places early in the game.

The 76-year-old had thought he could lead Wigan out at the Wembley-hosted semi-final, only for the plan to fall though as kick-off neared.

"It was our mistake," Martinez said. "In the semi-final, nobody leads the teams out. If we had been in semi-finals before we would have known that.

"We will get the chairman leading the team out. It will bring full circle his time with the FA Cup. That would be a fitting moment for what happened in 1960.

"When you get to know him, he is an example of a human being that sets incredible targets. Sometimes they are unthinkable. What he has done at Wigan deserves a movie. It is just a football dream."

Wigan must now return their attention to their fight against relegation from the Premier League, and now have two games in hand on fellow strugglers QPR and Reading.

Another likely consequence of their second date at Wembley is a first ever qualification for European competition, but Martinez says such achievements will only be truly cherished if the club maintain its top-flight status.

"When I arrived, one of the targets was to get Wigan into Europe. It was the next possible dream. We have been in the Premier League eight seasons in a row. Getting into Europe would take the club to a whole different level. It is an incredible possibility.

"Any cup success is only a success if we achieve our aim in the league, otherwise it has been a waste of time."

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