Before I start with the match preview today, I would like to take this opportunity to wish my daughter and her future husband all the very best on their life together.
Yes my beautiful daughter has chosen this day?the 3rd May to get married.
A game that I have been looking forward to all year is now a million miles away, I have had a duty thrust upon me to lead from the front, to escort someone to meet the man of their dreams, unfortunately I have had to tell the lads that I wont be driving down the M6 they`ll need to make their own way there.
So today I will be at a ceremony of two young people committing themselves to one another for the rest of their lives instead of being in the stands wondering if Scharner will commit for one more year.
I am very relaxed about today, not the wedding the game, don`t worry about relegation, there are too many variables for us to end up going down, it just isnt going to happen.
Today the pressure is on Villa, they need the points to keep the pressure on Everton for that European spot, and come 5 o`clock I am expecting two results, Latics safety assured in the Premier League and a very expensive afternoon finally over.
What the bosses say
Latics boss Steve Bruce:
‘It’s all about how you accumulate those points over the season – a point here and a point there always stands you in good stead.
‘We might need one or two more points but I think we’re capable of that.
‘Whether it be at Aston Villa at the weekend or at home to Manchester United next weekend, if it has to be.’
Villa boss Martin O’Neill:
‘I think they are really strong. I think they are very resilient.
‘I have always found the games really tough against them in the three matches we have played in my time here.
‘Steve Bruce has done remarkably well, getting the situation turned around.
‘Their players will be fired-up for it. They are not yet completely out of the woods, although they are in a pretty decent position and a lot of things would have to go against them for it to happen.’
Aston Villa Team News:
Olof Mellberg could miss his last home game ever for the club through illness.
Carson, Mellberg, Knight, Laursen, Bouma, Young, Petrov, Reo-Coker, Barry, Agbonlahor, Carew, Harewood, Salifou, Routledge, Berger, Taylor, Maloney, Osbourne
Player to watch: Gareth Barry
Class player and looks like he’s off to a big club this summer
Wigan Athletic Team News:
Erik Edman is long term with knee ligaments and Mario Melchiot will meiss the rest of the season with a torn abducter muscle, the good news is Emile Heskey has declared himself fit and is available
Kirkland, Taylor, Scharner, Boyce, Kilbane, Valencia, Brown, Palacios, Koumas, Bent, Heskey, King, Sibierski, Skoko, Pollitt, Aghahowa, Bramble, Figueroa, Hagen, Olembe.
Player to watch: Wilson Palacios
Is there any previous?
This seasons reverse fixture
Latics 1-2 Villa
In our first season in the Premier League we did the double over Villa
Rob Styles (Waterlooville)
Games – 24
Yellows – 76
Reds – 8
The last Latics game that Rob Styles refereed was th 0-0 draw with Arsenal at the JJB, maybe an omen
Both my heart and head says 1-1 draw
Last Game of the Season
Latics Vs Manchester United
Sunday 11th May 2008
3 pm kick-off