Date:Monday December 22 2008
One thing that strikes me about this game is that its going to be a physical, heavily contested game. Newcastle have not lost in two and Joe Kinnear is doing a marvellous job up at the Toon. All credit to him, I say.
Steve Bruce has also done a marvellous job at Wigan and the club are in a healthy position of 11th but have an opportunity to really move up the table with victory against Newcastle.
Fans of Newcastle won't like me mentioning the fact they have a dire record at the JJB Stadium but that's not to say the record cannot be turned around because this is football and is very unpredictable which makes it irresistibly fascinating.
Obefami Martins is out for Newcastle so Shola Ameobi may partner Michael Owen up front and these two men are hot spots so Wigan's defence will need to be on its guard.
Newcastle will have to be wary of Emile Heskey and Amr Zaki who also know how to find the back of the net in style - Heskey's goal against Blackburn, whilst not a wonder goal, was a great finish and its nice to see the big fella find his shooting boots and also the fact he's more than likely going to remain at the club until the end of the season.
Steve Bruce's charges know this is a game against a number of teams slugging it out in the relegation mix and that a win would really do the club the world of good but Joe Kinnear knows how valuable a point or a win would also be as it would move Newcastle away from danger as well and allow them to build on their recent good form.
Two clubs in decent form, wanting the points for the same reason, should be an entertaining battle at the JJB Stadium.
PLAYER TO WATCH: WIGAN: EMILE HESKEY
Emile will want to show the world why he's still got what it takes and as he's moving on, will want to enhance his reputation with a sparkling performance against Newcastle.
PLAYER TO WATCH: NEWCASTLE: MICHAEL OWEN
Michael Owen is legend and he will be a threat all by himself so Wigan will need to be on their utmost guard to foil the threat.
Two teams slugging it out for points to rejuvinate their table position, this is a real football battle and I can't see either team separating the other here so I am going to go for a draw. Both teams I think will go for it.
Wigan 1 Newcastle 1
Lets hope its a good christmas break for the Latics and that they can beat the Toon. Ryan Taylor, get your shooting boots back on, lad. You've got the jinx on the Newcastle team so make it four in a row and let the Latics fans all have a merry christmas. Can Ryan Taylor do the business again? Lets hope so.
Happy Christmas and a happy new year to all!
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Date:Monday December 22 2008
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