In this afternoons game at the JJB there will be three Egyptian players vying to be victorious Amr Zaki will be leading the Latics line and in the Boro line-up will be forward Mido and midfield player Mohamed Shawky
The game though will have a lot more importance than national pride for the three players, Latics are on a roll and Zaki is the countries top scorer, he will be looking to continue this against a Boro side that`s been rocked by injury, illness and suspension
Boro in contrast to Latics good form have been beaten in their last four games and will want to put a stop to that before the rot sets in and they end up struggling in a relegation fight.
There is an international break next week so it is important to go into this with confidence high, Bruce has stated that Latics will be going all out for a win today, the three points could, if results go our way, lift the Latics to 6th in the table
Whatever the result I am sure it will be a good game and with the three international team mates out there 20,000 Latics fans and 80 million Egyptians will be watching the proceedings at the JJB come 3 pm today
What the bosses say:
Latics boss Steve Bruce:
‘If we can go into the international break with another good result then we can really say we’ve had a decent start.
‘We lost to West Ham and Chelsea but since then we’ve produced a run of good form which we hope to continue.
‘The target was to get through to the international break with 10 points from the first seven games and now we’ve set our sights on 11 because that’s what we’ll have if we can win on Saturday.’
Boro boss Gareth Southgate:
‘We have done a lot of finishing this week because you have to recreate those positions and get them used to hitting the back of the net.
‘That’s what you have to do. You practise mentally, you practise physically on the field.
‘The players will all have their own routines. They will all have their things they like to do to build up to games.’
Wigan Athletic Team News:
Erik Edman is close to a return and is Steve Bruces only missing man:
Kirkland, Melchiot, Boyce, Bramble, Figueroa, Valencia, Cattermole, Palacios, Kapo, Heskey, Zaki, Brown, Camara, De Ridder, Kilbane, Koumas, Kupisz, Scharner, Taylor, Pollitt, Kingson.
Player to watch: Amr Zaki
Do we need to tell you who to watch, the guy is in electric form at the moment
Middlesbrough Team News:
Gareth Southgate has a lot of injury headaches at the moment and finds Andrew Taylor (hip flexor), Robert Huth (ankle injury), Gary O’Neil (ill), Emanuel Pogatetz (suspended), Tuncay Sanli (knee), Julio Arca (ankle) doubtful or missing.
Turnbull, Jones, Hoyte, Wheater, Huth, Riggott, Taylor, Grounds, Digard, O’Neil, Aliadiere, Downing, Johnson, Shawky, Alves, Mido, Walker, Emnes, Craddock.
Player to watch: Mido
Nearly became a Latics player during the summer and will want to get one over his international team mate Zaki
Is there any previous?
Complete league record against Boro:
Latics 2 win, Boro 3, Draws 3
Prem: Latics 2 win, Boro 2, Draws 2,
Latics 1-0 Boro
Referee Steve Tanner
15th August 2007
Martin Atkinson (Yorkshire)
Games – 4
Yellows – 10
Reds – 0
Heart says 3-1 Latics win
Head says 2-0 Latics win
Liverpool Vs Latics
18th October 2008