Wigan's Season 09/10
First off, apologies for not doing a preview for Wigan Vs. Hull. I've been very busy of late but I have managed to find some time in order to give my thoughts on the season in hand.
It has been a strangely inconsistent season for Wigan Athletic - they can beat three of the big boys and secure a fantastic away victory at Villa Park, but be brought back down to Earth with poor defeats at White Hart Lane, for example.
The first thing to do for Martinez is to get Stoijkovic off the Wigan payroll - he's not a keeper of Premier League quality. He has shown some flashes of what he's capable of and perhaps, if given more time, like dad said as I was watching the game on ESPN, we might have another Heurehlo Gomes on our hands, but for me, he needs to go.
More importantly is that we need to retain our attack - Hugo Rodallega, despite a good season, has been inconsistent, much like the team. He scored an absolute belter against Villa and some vital goals to keep us in this league. However, if he stays, I'd like to see him and how he improves as a player. He's certainly better than Heskey was but there is room for improvement from Rodallega.
Charles N'Zogbia has been a revelation and a major disappointment at times - he's one player, like Rodallega amongst others, that we need to desperately need to hold onto. He got the winner against Arsenal which sealed our safety but he has had some fine games and goals to add to this as well. A bright future for the pair lies ahead.
We do need to shore up a leaky defence though. I do think we're better than what we once were, but nevertheless, this is the area which requires the most stability. Melchiot will be off, I think. Steve Gohouri should be given a chance after an impressive showing in the games he's played in. Titus Bramble will always be the player you love to love or love to tear your hair out over, but he's a latic legend and I think the next season will see the arrival of a new right back to replace Mario Melchiot, a faithful servant, plus possibly a left back. Its not entirely clear whether Maynor Figueroa will stay but I hope he does. An 8m price tag has been slapped on his head which should test Bruce's resolve enough in order for him to dissuade him from pursuing this move.
Wigan need more goal scorers in midfield - Ben Watson can certainly score but not often enough on a premier league stage. Mo Diame has scored one goal all season and is certainly a player who is being touted by other clubs, but we need him to stay as he is a class player, but we need some more goal scorers in midfield. The arrival of Victor Moses is a good move and hopefully N'Zogbia will stay but a proven midfielder who can score on a more consistent basis would be a good step forward.
Therefore, I think we need a new goalkeeper to backup Stoijkovic, a right back and possibly a centre back and maybe a left back to replace Maynor Figueroa, should he go.
In midfield, we need a goal scorer. Ben Watson is good, but not enough on a regular basis. Hopefully this is an area where Martinez will splash the cash as our defenders can score, with the exception of poor Mario Melchiot, whose been such a great servant to the club - if this is his parting of the ways, its a shame he couldn't seal it with a goal himself. However, Paul Scharner is more or less definitely off and his assist will be his final service perhaps which got Wigan a draw which, it has to be said, barely deserved against a spirited Hull City side. Best of luck to both players should they go off to pastures new.
So a few players who can add more potent goal threat and we could be a serious force next season and lets hope Martinez's dream of acquiring European football can be achieved, but first there are a few things which need to be changed first.