The two stadiums, the Macron Stadium and the DW Stadium are separated by just 8 miles, creating a rivalry between the two sets of supporters. The fans of both clubs both consider the other to be one of their main footballing rivals, leading to a heated atmosphere at these matches. The derby has been contested throughout the divisions over the years including the Football League, and more recently the Premier League. Bolton were relegated from the Premier League in 2012 after 11 consecutive seasons in the top flight and Latics followed a year later in 2013 after 8 consecutive seasons in the top flight. The two clubs met most recently in the FA Cup on 3 January 2015, with teenager Zach Clough scoring on his debut to seal a 1-0 win for Bolton. Just weeks previously, the clubs had met in the Football LeagueChampionship on 7 November 2014, with Bolton gaining a comfortable 3-1 victory.
In a 2012 Premier League meeting, 17 Wigan Athletic supporters were banned by the club for several years as flares were set off during their 2–1 away win.
In the November 2014 fixture between the two sides, Wigan's Northern Ireland-born midfielder James McClean was strongly criticized for not wearing a poppy on his shirt as a mark of respect to those killed at World War's I and II. McClean later wrote an open letter to Wigan chairman Dave Whelan and the club's supporters explaining his decision. This game also proved to be the last in charge of Wigan for Uwe Rosler as he was relieved of his duties the following week.