Wigan Athletic a review of season 2010/2011, by Martin
After surviving the previous season I was expecting more from Roberto’s boys this time round and on the train to Wigan I chatted with a Blackpool lad living on the Wirral on the way to the first match I had no idea that we were about to get thrashed 4-0 having waited all summer that match left me feeling really low as this was quickly followed by a 6-0 home defaet by Chelsea at this point I did want Roberto to go, then a 1-0 away win at Spurs started to restore my faith.
Up next was Sunderland and after Catts picked up his double yellow I was disappointed Latics only drew the game 1-1 though I thought Di Santo looked good at the time too the home Match with Man City came to early for the lads 0-2 followed by a creditable 0-0 at Birmingham City.
Wigan beat The Wolves 2-0 in the next game and I thought we were on our way Jordi Gomez looked good that day too controlling the ball and scoring a great free kick.
Then came Newcastle away and the story of much of the season as Latics somehow threw away a two goal lead in the last twenty minutes, a one goal lead was also thrown away against Bolton after Hugo Rodallega had given us the lead, this match was also significant for the injuries to James McCarthy and Emerson Boyce (they were going to be missed) plus a bad performance at Fulham a 0-2 loss saw out the month.
Into November and a bad start with a 2-1 loss toBlackburnwas followed by a creditable performance with a 1-1 draw home toLiverpoolthough chances to win were again spurned.
A Victor Moses goal gave us a One Nil win over West Bromwich Albion with Di Santo missing a sitter that would have made it two
Man Utd and the ref did for us 2-0 at Old Trafford, Antolin Alcaraz and Hugo Rodallega both seeing red then missing West Hamssave our season match resulting in a 3-1 loss and a Bosselli penalty miss things were starting to look bad at this stage of the season.
This month saw more points dropped, firstly at home to Stoke 2-2 but at least the Latics had fought back twice a good away point at Everton 0-0 , however Stam nearly won it at the death.
A great 2-1 away win at Wolves followed the first double of the season and a good draw home to Arsenal 2-2 but with but with N’Zogbia seeing red
We then looked lightweight in the 1-0 reverse toNewcastlea few days later in January
Somehow Mike Pollit helped us to another 1-1 draw away at Bolton then Stam with a late equaliser, more points were dropped at home to Fulham who came back to level 1-1 Rodallega missing the best chance to make it two, Arsenal then beat us 3-0 at the Emirates’ and Villa 2-1 at home Hendry Thomas giving away a silly penalty to set Villa on their way so things were looking grim as February approached we sat 18th
P24 W2 D6 L5 F12 A23 W2 D4 L5 F8 A16 GD-19 Pts22
Two telling facts at the end of the transfer window N’Zogbia stayed and Conor Sammon was signed but the problems remained though as yet another lead thrown away in a 2-2 draw at the Hawthorns with Ben Watson getting a set piece right then Hugo N’Zogbia and others wasted chances before we were pegged back with twelve minutes left
Next up the first must win game of the season, home to Blackburn Rovers, Jason Roberts opened for the away team then McCarthy scored a sublime second Rodallega and a Ben Watson Spot kick gave us a 4-3 home win we had to hang on a bit though this match was also Notable for the return of Boyce and McCarthy , the new red army of Kenny Dalglish were then halted Diame scoring in a 1-1 at Anfield. Waynethe Elbow Rooney and our old friend Mark Clattenburgh saw us go down 4-0 to Moan Utd at home.
Next up was Man City away and Ali all Habsi slip possibly his only one of the season led to a 1-0 defeat, Conor Sammon should have equalised at the last gasp & I was starting to feel hopeful that we might survive, however this feeling went through despair the start of the Birmingham home match and joy at the finish as Figs scored that last gasp winner to give us a 2-1 home win that match seemed to give the lads confidence
Spurs were more than matched at the D.W. Connor Sammon then Di Santo nearly giving the Latics all three points but 0-0 it was.
A trip toStamfordBridgewas next and many feared the worse but it was only an elbow from Torres that gave the pensioners all three points in a 1-0 defeat.
We were still at the bottom at this stage but in one of the tightest finishes to a season ever a win could take us out of the drop zone and a week later atBloomfieldroadBlackpoolit duly arrived as Latics gained revenge for that opening day defeat with a 3-1 away win.
Rodallega N’Zogbia and Diame with the goals for great travelling army to roar them home and for the first time in ages we were out of the relegation places with the Seasiders significantly in the bottom three for the first time.
The next match was away at Sunderland and we all questioned weather Wigan could break the two winning matches in a row hoodoo under Roberto Martinez and when Diame banged in a scorcher it looked on for about three minutes until the defence fell apart and all the old failings came back to haunt us as Sunderland ran out 4-2 winners one good thing DiSanto got off the mark but it was too late to matter so we were back in 18th
A busy April came to an end with Everton the visitors to the D.W. as with the previous home match Latics made the better chances though Everton controlled the ball for a lot of the gam.e Latics went ahead through N’Zogbia who should have had a penalty moments earlier picked himself up and curled the ball into the corner of the net
Charles was then guilty of giving away a penalty with Ali Al Habsi making a magnificent save from Artetta to his left to send the home support into raptures, chances were again missed to make it 2 after half time then Rodallega managed to handle the ball on his own line and Leighton Baines (of all people) made no mistake to make it 1-1 Latics had other chances but could not take them so the game ended all square.
As we entered the business end of the season still in 18th with 3 games left my nerves were shredded a trip to Aston villa was next after going front N’Zogbia again, yet again a lead was let slip and a nervy game finished 1-1 yet another draw still 18th
Up next one of the most exciting stomach churning nerve wracking crunch games I have ever witnessed.
It was the final home game of the season against West Ham United, the game started at a furious pace with Latics dominating but missing chances then Demba Ba scored for West Ham after Latics failed to clear a corner,
Latics took control again and managed to miss some more chances before Demba Ba did it again 2-0 to the Hammers who’d had hardly any of the ball Latics kept going but still could not score so 0-2 at half time
Latics carried on pushing forward after the Break and got themselves back into the contest with a brilliant curling free kick from the Zogmaster, 1-2 and you could feel the place lift.
Demba Ba then wasted a chance for a ha-trick before that man Connor Sammon broke through with a great pass from Ben Watson and calmly slotted the ball into the corner for 2-2 the place went mad now we had real hope.
West Ham had to attack as didWiganand this made for an end to end last twenty minutes the Eastenders had many attacks as did Latics.
Ben Watson hitt the post on 90 minutes and just as we were wondering if a draw would give us a chance on the last day N’Zogbia broke through on the right and unleashed a shot that somehow crept under Rob Green and eventually into the net if a roar had greeted the first two latics goals then this was the roar to end all roars.
A few moments later Mike Dean blew his whistle to end an incredible match we were 19th but felt we now had a great chance. .Note West Ham were relegated and Avram Grant sacked after this match.
So to the final match as the day started Latics were one of five clubs two of whom would go down, Latics away to Stoke city with an eye on other results a nervy first half saw The Potters on the attack and Ali Al Habsi making several good saves and Emerson Boyce cleared off the line.
Latics were better after the break Diame and Sammon both having chances then as good news started to filter through from other games Watson played in Figueroa who broke down the left put in a great cross for Hugo Rodallega to head home emphatically with twelve minutes left.
Other results were going our way and a draw would have been enough but Latics held on through six minutes of added time before Andre Marriner finally blew his whistle to confirm another Premier League season for the mighty Wigan Athletic and some great celebrations from the supporter Players Manager Coaching staff and Chairman
We finished 16th as I am sure you all know with Blackpool Birmingham and West Ham United the ones to go.
It is my Hope that the players are more ready for the start of next season than this one and that this squad can largely be kept together
Mistakes are included free of charge, thank you all for reading, Martin
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