A fine pre-season workout by all the available first team squad along with a couple of new young bloods saw Wigan defeat the Champions league opponents in the warm evening sunshine at the DW Stadium last night.
Wigan took to the field resplendent in their new kit, a design which seems to have divided opinions with the introduction of black shorts, however there was no dissenting voices in a display high on skill and creativity with the highlights being performances by the old (Al Habsi) , the new (Tavernier/Taylor) and the forgotten (Fyvie).
Wigan started brightly with the back three of Ramis, Boyce and Kiernan passing the ball around with aplomb at the back and Fyvie and Chow willing runners in midfield, constantly trying to find the front runners.
Tavernier almost open his goal scoring account for the Latics when his free kick was tiper around the post by Gonen.
Within five minutes Wigan were forced into a change when Fortune limped off to be replaced by Waghorn
Both sides continued to play open attacking football and in McManaman and Waghorn, Fyvie found willing foils for his skillful probings.
Tavernier continued to be a threat and his commitment came to fruition when his fine cross was met by the head of Wahorn who directed the ball past Gonen and Latics had the lead.
Within two minutes Besiktas were level when from free kick Ismail curled the ball around the wall, wrong footing Carson leaving the keeper to remonstrate with his wall.
The rest of the half continued to “to and fro” with Wigan having a reasonable shout for a penalty turned down by the referee as McManaman went down in the area and two good chances for Besiktas thwarted by the flag of the assistant referee.
The second half started with two changes for Wigan with Rogne and Al Habsi on for Ramis and Carson respectively and almost immediately Al Habsi was forced to make the first of several fine saves following a powerful shot from Sahan
Wigan took the lead from the penalty spot after Hutchinson was harshly adjudged to have brought McManaman down in the box, Waghorn converting the spot kick with aplomb
Al Habsi continued to make fine reflex saves including two superb ones from Pektemek, as Besiktas continued to push forwards in search of an equaliser
Wigan looked to counter attack and “A Triallist ” intercepted a bll on the half way line and broke free of the covering defence but his shot was weak and Gonen saved easily. The triallist was involved again shortly after but the keeper saved Waghorn’s shop comfortably after the newcomer had fed the former Leicester player.
Riera who had replaced McManaman showed glimpses of his talent with some fine lay offs and strong running and one of these forays into the opposition half generated a free kick which Tavernier once again took and once again came close to scoring. He found a willing ally in Jennings whose industry and determination was a credit to a young player making his home debut.
The game continued at a fast pace right until the final whistle and both sides can be well pleased with the effort and skill they put into an entertaining game
Team Line Up and Substitutions
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