London: A controversial week for Wigan ended on a frustrating note as new manager Malky Mackay and embattled chairman Dave Whelan saw their Championship side squander the lead in a 1-1 draw against Middlesbrough on Saturday.
Whelan has been widely criticised for his incendiary comments in a newspaper interview while he attempted to defend his decision to appoint Mackay this week.
Mackay is under Football Association investigation for allegedly sending racist and anti-Semitic texts during his time in charge at Cardiff and Whelan, asked if he was wrong to hire the under-fire Scot, made the situation worse when he made questionable comments about Jews and the Chinese.
Both men deny being racists, having been branded as such by Mackay`s former Cardiff employer Vincent Tan.
But Wigan`s day began with yet another public pronouncement from Whelan, this time warning that he would resign as chairman if the FA finds him guilty of making racist comments.
In the circumstances Mackay and Whelan must have been relieved to be able to focus on football for 90 minutes, but even then their luck was out as Shaun Maloney`s fine free-kick was cancelled out by Patrick Bamford`s equaliser for Middlesbrough to leave the struggling Latics with one victory in their last 13 matches.
Whelan left his entrance late, emerging into the directors` box a matter of moments before kick-off and when he did the reaction was one of unequivocal support.
Fans in the West Stand turned as one to the club`s long-time benefactor, chanting his name and offering a lengthy ovation as he took his seat.
The 77-year-old appeared to wipe away a tear as he raised his hand in acknowledgement.
Middlesbrough`s fans in the away end offered a chorus of "You`re just a town full of racists", setting the tone for another depressing day for the 2013 FA Cup winners as the racism row rumbles on.
Derby extended their advantage at the top of the second tier table to three points thanks to a 2-1 win at Watford, as goals from Jordon Ibe and Craig Bryson either side of Gianni Munari`s strike gave County victory.
Bournemouth twice led at home to Ipswich through Yann Kermorgant and Matt Ritchie but had to settle for a 2-2 draw as Teddy Bishop and Daryl Murphy replied for the visitors.
Blackburn overcame the dismissal of Tom Cairney as a Jordan Rhodes brace helped them come from behind to beat Leeds 2-1 at Ewood Park.
South Korea`s Lee Chung-Yong scored Bolton`s equaliser in a 1-1 draw at bottom of the table Blackpool.
Elsewhere, Britt Assombalonga, Matty Fryatt and Henri Lansbury struck in a 3-0 romp for Nottingham Forest at Wolves.
Birmingham won 1-0 at Rotherham, while Norwich and Brighton drew 3-3.
Huddersfield drew 0-0 with Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton shared a goalless draw with south London rivals Millwall.