Date:Thursday November 19 2009
The decision to move the Tottenham Hotspur Wigan Athletic game this weekend from Saturday to Sunday appears to have upset some people.
Both the Latics and Spurs were in agreement to put the game back a day when the fixture list first came out in June, with the possibility of both clubs having a fair few players potentially involved in the World Cup play-offs, at the time it was the correct course of action.
Colombia, Honduras and Austria all had the chance of playing a double header this past week and that would have meant a large chunk of the Latics first eleven involved in two highly charged games with lots of travelling involved, Spurs faced a similar dilemma with some of their squad members.
As it turned out none of the Latics players were caught up in the play-offs but some still travelled for international friendlies.
Now the Football Supporters` Association have got involved and their chairman Malcolm Clarke has made a statement condemning the fact that the game is being played on Sunday, Clarke says: 'It is a worrying trend''
'We think this is a very regrettable development. There are far too many games moved as it is.
'If it's not on television and neither team has been playing the previous Thursday then it should not be moved. This is a worrying trend and we will raise it with the Premier League at our next meeting. You can be fairly sure that no one asked the paying punters what they thought.''
That might be all well and good but surely the players health and safety should come first, an extra day to recover can make all the difference to their well being. Latics haven`t got the biggest of squads and it would be unthinkable for Roberto Martinez to leave out Hugo Rodallega and Hendry Thomas should they have played in high pressure midweek games even though they would have only returned to England on Friday.
A Latics spokesman re-iterated the clubs point when he said: 'It was mutually agreed that, being international week, it would allow our players a bit more time to recover from their international duties.''
I don`t like Sunday football, it feels strange, not normal but I would sooner see the players fresh and vibrant rather than docile on the pitch plus I would also feel more comfortable knowing that they have had an extra day to recover.
During the past two seasons at the Latics we have witnessed lethargic performances from the likes of Wilson Palacios, Maynor Figueroa, Antonio Valencia and Hugo Rodallega when they have returned from international duty and obviously this travelling playing, travelling playing, then travelling back to the UK and playing almost immediately must put strain on their bodies, no I am not selfish enough to demand that they play on Saturdays come what may, but maybe there is another answer.
The Premier League or UEFA or FIFA have a duty of care to the players, perhaps they should agree to have free weekends on both sides of international games and make these compulsory free weekends, at the moment no top flight games are allowed on the weekend of the international game what about extending that to the weekend following a midweek international fixture as well.
It is difficult for fans to travel on Sundays and I understand that the away following at White Hart Lane this Sunday will be particularly low but surely that is still better than risking the players well being.
Vital Wigan are running a competition for three lucky members to receive a Latics WN1 T-Shirt signed by the boss himself Roberto Martinez.
So how do you get to win a T-Shirt signed by the gaffer? Simply answer the following question.
Where is the new Latics WN1 situated?
A - The Galleries
B - The Grand Arcade
C - The Royal Arcade
Send your answer to: firstname.lastname@example.org, be sure to mark your email T-Shirt comp, include your name and a postal address and T-Shirt size required (these will be passed onto Wigan Athletic who will distribute the prize) and Vital username.
Closing date is Friday 4th December 5pm
The Latics Hit 2000 Points Milestone
Wigan Athletic achieved their 2000th point as a league club in the 1-1 draw with Fulham
You must have some fantastic memories of games that we have achieved points in over the years, and you must have a favourite that sticks out, either from the mists of time like that first win against Rochdale or something more recent like breaking our hoodoo against Chelsea, why not jot them down and send them in and Vital Latics will publish them under the heading 2000 Memories.
Send your favourite match memories to 2000 Memories@vital
You can listen to the Latics Speyk podcasts now by clicking on the player here:
Date:Thursday November 19 2009
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