In the websites, in the pubs and clubs of Wigan and wherever two or more Latics fans are gathered , questions are being asked about the Martinez revolution.
1/ That Wigan are tactically naive.
Martinez has stated a desire to play like Barcelona but on several occasions this season so far we have been out matched tactically, resulting in embarrassing defeats.
On occasions however such as Villa and Everton away there has been a game plan that has worked although last week we were painfully exposed by a resurgent Gunners outfit.
What is needed today is a performance with flair and steel which acknowledges Chelsea’s strengths and seeks to negate them.
2/ That the players don’t buy the Martinez revolution.
Melchiot has publically stated his support for Martinez this week but many of the players have looked uncomfortable with the ethos being espoused.
What is needed is a performance of commitment, passion and effort something which was evident at Everton but sadly lacking at the Emirates.
3/ That the squad isn’t strong enough to compete at this level.
Only four of the usual starting line up were not regulars last season…Koumas, Gomez, Thomas and Diame.
Good players don’t become bad ones overnight and the back four which was the key to our survival last season is now conceding goals at an alarming rate.
The lack of experience in centre midfield with the loss of Cattermole and Brown, places an awful lot on the shoulders on three players who are inexperienced at this level who have literally been thrown in the deep end in Diame, Thomas and Gomez.
This triumvirate need to take a more pro-active role in the match, instead of a reactive role as was evidenced last weekend.
4/ That we won’t score enough goals to stay up.
This is a biggie, with the loss of Valencia, Zaki and Heskey we have only Rodellaga who seems capable of scoring regularly at this level. The lone striker role means a reliance on other players to score and none of the team have a history of contributing goals on a regular basis.
Hugo cannot be expected to stay fit all season so Gomez, N’Zogbia and others need to contribute goals as well as effort.
5/ That the team isn’t fit enough.
At last season’s fans forum, Bruce stated Latics had gone from the 18th fittest team in the Premier League to the sixth.
This season several players have seemed off the pace, which may be a lack of fitness or a reaction to the more measured style of play.
Players need to compete for 90 mins and too often this season midfielders have been seen to jog back when the opposition have been attacking.
Whatever the result today, a good performance will go a long way to answering some of these concerns.