Norwich roll into town this afternoon, currently they are sitting seven points ahead of us in the table and have played a game more, a win against the Canaries and they are right in the thick of it with us.
They aren’t in the best of form either at the moment, just one win from their last thirteen Premier League games, I’d say they are hitting a bad patch at the wrong time, we need to exploit this
The main concern as far as the Latics are is that the game follows an international break, historically we really struggle following these breaks and put in some our worst performances, this is something that we cannot afford to do this time round
The last home game against Newcastle had a real ‘in this together’ feel about it, fans and players pushing with each other to get the result, which came right at the death with Arouna Koné’s goal, this is exactly what is required again today
Norwich will undoubtedly be dogged to try and fight for a result to keep them in the safety margin, we need to be patient and keep plugging away, this season has the potential to be one of the most memorable ones ever in the history of our club, as fans we need to be aware of how our support can affect the players on the pitch and stay behind the lads no matter what.
What The Bosses Say:
Latics boss Roberto Martinez:
‘The opportunity to be involved in April in two competitions is something we’re embracing the challenge of. It needs a big-club mentality and we’re enjoying that.
‘But every game in the league now is a unique opportunity to get points and to get where we want to be. It’s nothing different than any other season and, as you saw the last game we played, there is a real desire to improve our home form.
‘I thought the atmosphere we created showed that and the next one is to improve our results after an international break, which this season, for one reason or another, haven’t been good enough.’
‘I think what this break has done is allowed the players to come back and just focus on what they’ve got in front of them.
‘It would be hard to find another seven weeks left in a season in Wigan Athletic’s history as exciting as these ones so I think this international break has come at the right time for us.’
Norwich boss Chris Hughton
‘The ironic thing is that Wigan have probably played better this season than other seasons’
‘But in the last two games we have seen an indication of what they can do. Everton (in the FA Cup) away was a good as you will see and they have got that character to get a last-minute winner against Newcastle.
‘They have an excellent manager in Roberto Martinez, a very calm manager who is used to being in this position.
‘You hope they don’t have a good day. They are an excellent footballing team although they have obviously had difficulties this season, otherwise they wouldn’t be in the position they are in.
‘They have a lot of players playing well at the moment but they are used to going into this stage of the season and excelling.’
Wigan Athletic Team News:
Ramis, Pollitt, Miyaichi and Crusat all out, McManaman is doubtful
Latics possible – Robles, Alcaraz, Scharner, Figueroa, McCarthy, Gomes, Beausejour, Boyce, Maloney, Di Santo, Kone
Player to watch: Arouna Kone
Kone was superb against Newcastle last time out and he grabbed a late winner, more of the same please
By permission of Bernard Platt/Wigan Athletic
Norwich City Team News:
John Ruddy and Anthony Pilkington are out through injury, keeper Mark Bunn is suspended, but Alexander Tettey and Russell Martin are fit
Norwich from – Camp, R Martin, Bassong, Barnett, Garrido, Snodgrass, Johnson, E Bennett, Turner, Jackson, Holt, Becchio, Howson, Hoolahan, Fox, Tettey, R Bennett, Smith, Steer, Whittaker, Kamara.
Player to watch: Wez Hoolahan
Busy player and has a knack of scoring against us
Latics and Norwich have met eight times
Latics 1 win, Norwich 4, draws 3
All Eight Meetings
15 Dec 2012 – Premier League – Norwich 2 Latics 1
11 Mar 2012 – Premier League – Norwich 1 Latics 1
13 Aug 2011 – Premier League – Latics 1 Norwich 1
09 April 2004 – League Division 1 – Norwich 2 Latics 0
04 Oct 2003 – League Division 1 – Latics 1 Norwich 1
22 Sept 1998 – Worthington Cup – Latics 2 Norwich 3
16 Sept 1998 – Worthington Cup – Norwich 1 Latics 0
31 Jan 1987 – FA Cup – Latics 1 Norwich 0
Howard Webb (Rotherham)
Why not take a look at our ‘Meet The Ref’ article
Howard Webb Card Watch 2012/13
Games – 33, yellows – 114, reds – 3
Head says a close game 1-1
Heart says Latics to romp it 3-0, as always going with the heart
QPR v Latics
FA Cup Semi-Final
Latics v Millwall
The latest edition of the PWU Wigan Athletic podcast is now available for download.
This week in the studio at the Beech Hill Book Cycle are Barry, Gareth, Greg, Paul and Dan. On the agenda is the International break and its effect on the rest of our season, especially seeing as Sunderland have had their talisman, Steven Fletcher sidelined for the rest of this campaign
The visit of Norwich to the DW Stadium this weekend is also previewed (11:40), though talk dose drift to match official Howard Webb and referees in general (18:40) before getting back on track with the Norwich preview.
There is special mention and a big well done to the Latics ticket office staff (33:00)
We finish off this episode with a Josephs Goal update and some big news regarding a planned event (36:20)
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