Saturday 16th April 2011
Blackpool 1-3 Wigan Athletic
The Premier League
A packed Bloomfield Road in glorious sunshine had a Town Called Malice playing over the tannoy as loads of beach balls bounced here there and everywhere.
To continue the party atmosphere for the tremendous away support Hugo Rodallega rocked the home fans with an opening goal just on the three minute mark.
A crisp finish into the bottom left hand corner left the recalled keeper Matthew Gilks with no chance and this relegation “six pointer” swung Latics way.
The first half ebbed & flowed but the away outfit were never under any real pressure as Roberto’s dominated really throughout.
It ended as it started with a Wigan goal, The Zog broke away to make it an easy team talk for Martinez.
Latics were giving their opponents a master class in football as they played the way we know they can and in the way that Roberto wants them to.
Blackpool started lively in the second half but Latics soon gained control of the match again and bossed the match.
The midfield for the blue shirts dominated as they harried and stifled any home threat and it was no real surprise as the third goal arrived.
Diame’s shot took a wicked deflection from Cathcart and it was three nil to the Wiganers.
Latics continued to have the majority of the play but disaster struck when Gary Caldwell was alleged to foul after a great defensive header.
Quite a few home supporters had already left as Latics seemed to be confused as Adams didn’t take it & DJ Cambell scored from close range after the free kick.
Blackpool rallied to try and get back into a match they had already been hammered in, however Latics weathered a slight storm and came back down the M55 with three very, very valuable points.
Other results apart from Brums home win went for Latics as we climbed out of the bottom three, Wolves don’t play until next Saturday as Stoke are at Wembley.
Blackpool Gilks, Eardley, Crainey, Cathcart, Evatt, Adam, Southern, Grandin, (Phillips 57min) Varney (Puncheon 57mins) Campbell & Taylor-Fletcher (Beattie 57mins)
Unused substitutes, Kingson, Ormerod, Baptiste & Sylvestre.
Booked, Crainey & Evatt
Wigan Athletic Al Habsi, Boyce, G. Caldwell, Alcaraz, Gohouri, Watson, Diame (Gomez 80mins) McCarthy, N’Zogbia (Sammon 77mins) Cleverly & Rodallega.
Unused substitutes, Pollitt, Stam, Lopez, Moses & Di Santo.
Goalscorers, Rodallega 3mins, N’Zogbia 45mins & Cathcart OG 66mins.
Booked, McCarthy & Rodallega
Roberto reckons …..
“I said it before that I felt we played really against Chelsea and Spurs and it was disappointing not to get a win out of that,” Martinez said.
But today I felt that with the way Blackpool played, we had to be even better tactically than against the last two teams and I was extremely proud of the tactical awareness of the players.
I thought we coped with Blackpool really well. Obviously we are disappointed to have conceded the goal, but overall we looked a real threat, worked really hard and we looked like a team.
“Before the game the players wanted to give something back to the fans after the suffering they went through after the opening day of the season and their performance today was not possible without the tremendous support that made the journey.
From start to finish they were impressive and the players mentioned after their warm-up how loud the support was.
They deserved that winning feeling today because their input had a massive effect on the team’s performance.
We were all hurting after the last game against Blackpool, but to see them enjoying themselves and proud of their team was the most important part of today’s win.
It’s fair to say we finally got the rewards our performance deserved.
Over the last eight games I’ve been extremely pleased with the players’ efforts, and today they gave a complete display that showed how far we’ve come from when we faced Blackpool on the opening day of the season.
I’m sure many people will highlight the goal-scorers, and rightfully so, but from a team point of view they were all phenomenal.
On the first day of the season there was a naivety about our play, left ourselves exposed and played as individuals.
Today we were a great team who showed strong partnerships all over the pitch and a firm understanding of what was needed to win the game.
All of that is down to the hard-work done by the players on a daily basis, creating fierce competition within the squad making us the strongest we’ve ever been.
Blackpool are a team you need to stop from playing, if they are allowed to dictate things they can make it very complicated for you, pushing bodies forward pressing the defence.
Getting the first goal in the manner we did obviously helped our cause, but I was delighted in the manner we went on to control the game which is credit to the discipline and desire of the players.
The second goal was a phenomenal piece of football, and that’s what people want to see – raw talent in one-on-one situations ending with a goal.
Hugo (Rodallega) and Charles (N’Zogbia) did so much for the team today aside from scoring vital goals; they helped push the team forward, led a high line and worked hard for their team-mates.
When you consider the luck that didn’t go our way at Chelsea for the goal, we maybe deserved to have some go our way.
In the end I really wanted the players to keep that clean-sheet to get the full reward for their performance. It was to be but we’re delighted with the three points.”
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