"We definitely want him, and he wants to come to Wigan," insisted Spencer, who then conceded there was a contingency plan in place.
"We do have a list, but Steve has always been the one we wanted," added Spencer.
"Depending on the situation with Steve, we will have to wait and see whether we work our way down that list.
"But we've been without a manager now for two weeks, and we really want a manager in place - if possible - by the weekend."
It means caretaker boss Frank Barlow will again work with the team on today ahead of Saturday's daunting trip to leaders Arsenal.