Date: 29th April 2017 at 11:28am
Written by:

Come 5pm this evening there is a very high probability that our fate will be confirmed, a sad way to end a season that promised so much following the euphoria of the title win last May, still the ups and downs of following any football club is what makes this sport so special.

Bar the eight or so elite clubs of the Premier League most supporters are going to face heartbreak and joy in their lifetime, the joy that I have experienced in my time watching the Latics has far outweighed any heartbreak.

This potential relegation is nothing to fear, we should embrace a new beginning and if we can go some way to matching our 2015/16 campaign we will be in for another treat.

We go to grounds around the country and follow the Latics for a rollercoaster ride of emotions – they never disappoint – we see some exceptional moments and to be honest, some dire ones, but we follow them because they are our club, there are lots of supporters heading to the Madejski Stadium today in party mood, they will certainly embrace the new chapter of our history if indeed come 5pm it is confirmed.

A defeat for Birmingham and a draw for Blackburn, coupled with a Latics victory will give us the chance to fight another day, whatever happens we still have plenty to look forward to in the future.

Up the tics!

What The Bosses Say:

Latics boss Graham Barrow:

”Reading are probably technically the best footballing team in the league so we’ve got to respect that.

”We’ve had a plan in the games we’ve played recently and we`ll probably follow a similar one on Saturday, but with more armour this time.

”All we want going into the last game is to still have some sort of a chance and I think we’re better prepared for it than anybody if we can take it to that stage.”

”Ali (Al Habsi) has done really well for Reading and I noticed he was player of the year for them last season. He’s one of the best people I’ve ever met in football, great character and a really lovely man.

”He’ll be saddened by where we are in the league, I know he will, but I don’t expect any favours from him on Saturday. Let’s just hope he doesn’t have one of his better games, though.”

Reading boss Jaap Stam:

”We need to make sure that we don’t get surprised and that we are sharp and focussed from the beginning of the game.

”We need to make sure that we score that first goal and not the opposition.

”Just because we play at home against Wigan doesn’t mean we will win the game easily. It is going to be tough, they really go for it. I’ve seen that in the last couple of games they’ve played. They have made it very hard for their opposition.

”On the ball, when you give them time, they can play and you can see that. In this league everything is very close, it’s a strange competition because everybody can beat everybody. It does not mean because you are near the top of the league that you can beat the teams at the bottom very easily.”

Reading Team News:

Reading possible – Al Habsi, Gunter, Moore, Blackett, Popa, Kelly, Williams, Obita, Swift, Kermogrant, Grabban

Player to watch:
Ali Al Habsi

It will be great to see Ali in action again, hope he has a nightmare though.


By permission of Bernard Platt/Wigan Athletic

Wigan Athletic Team News:

Omar Bogle is fit to travel and should be in the squad if not the starting line-up.

Jake Buxton is out with a broken foot.

Latics possible – Gilks, R. Burke, Morgan, Burn, Warnock, MacDonald, Hanson, Power, Jacobs, Tunnicliffe, Powell

Player to watch:
Nick Powell

Only one man at the moment for the Latics


By permission of Bernard Platt/Wigan Athletic

Any Previous?

Down the years the Latics and Reading have met 43 times.

Latics have 18 wins, Reading 15, draws 10.

A note of positivity, it is 10 years since we last lost at Reading.

Last Six Meetings

05 Nov 2016 – Championship – Latics 0 Reading 3
17 Feb 2015 – Championship – Reading 0 Latics 1
09 Aug 2014 – Championship – Latics 2 Reading 2
18 Apr 2014 – Championship – Latics 3 Reading 0
21 Dec 2013 – Championship – Reading 1 Latics 2
23 Feb 2013 – Premier League – Reading 0 Latics 3

Ref Watch:

Tim Robinson (W Sussex)

Take a look at our ‘Meet The Ref’ article for the low down on today’s ref.

Tim Robinson Card Watch 2016/17

Games – 42, yellows – 178, reds – 9.

Match Prediction:

Head says goalless draw.

Heart says Latics to nick the points in a snatch and grab display 0-1, as always going with the heart.

Up Next:

Championship Final Game

Latics v Leeds United

DW Stadium
Sunday
07/05/17
12 noon.

Check out the latest PWU Podcast – Hanging On

This week we are joined in the studio by Wigan Evening Post Latics correspondent Paul Kendrick.

Timecodes:
0:00 Chucklevision intros with bonus bin complaints
3:00 Cardiff review with bonus Statman super rant!
8:00 Intermission: A Critical Review with bonus striker gripes
14:00 More Cardiff chatter with bonus King Joyce praise
17:00 Paul Kendrick QnA: Players afraid of being flogged off? Barra’ moving ‘upstairs’?
22:00 Which club serves the best press room food? With bonus pie ramble (of course)
24:00 WISH FM news: Ed Jones saves the day! With bonus Grant Holt jibes
27:00 Paul’s greatest ever Tweet & who would you like Latics to sign?
33:00 Youth players released & equal rights contracts
36:00 Not-at-all-token Reading preview with bonus FA Cup 2013 references
42:00 Joseph’s Goal Legends game: Jesus is a Wiganer again!
45:00 More Paul Kendrick QnA: Best and worst person you’ve interviewed?
48:00 Asking the difficult questions & defending against keyboard warriors
53:00 Shameless plug: All Gone Latics zine on sale vs Leeds & at the Legends game

The podcast can be listened to by clicking the embedded player below or downloaded to listen at you leisure by visiting www.buzzsprout.com

We are also available on itunes and we have an app for your tablet or mobile, just follow the instructions here