Date:Thursday September 29 2011
Wigan have fared badly in September, with defeats to Manchester City, Everton, Crystal Palace and Tottenham Hotspur. Now, Wigan have a chance to put this right with a win at Villa Park.
Sadly, Wigan are still without injured striker Hugo Rodallega which means Franco Di Santo might be leading the forward charge at Villa Park. Wigan have a good record at Villa Park, having garnered 2 wins and four draws and Villa have won just once against Wigan on this ground - history suggests a fruitful day for Wigan so lets hope it continues on Saturday - Latics fans could do with a tonic.
This encounter will be remembered for the first time Charles N'Zogbia has played against us since he moved to Villa from Wigan in the Summer - after telling fans that he would only move to a Champions League club (Dave Whelan), N'Zogbia ended up at Aston Villa. Once a club on the verge of Champions League success are now at best a mid-table club and this must come as a disappointment to their fans. The appointment of Alex McLeish went down like a lead balloon but he hasn't done too badly so far so there might be bright lights at the end of the tunnel for Villa.
Wigan sadly have lost 4 games on the trot - however this is a ground where Wigan have never lost on and records like that don't change too easily. That said, I can't see really where the goals shall come from - however, sometimes a hero emerges from the shadows so I'm hoping Martinez goes for a 4-4-2 and gives it his very all. However, I see a 4-5-1 in the pipeline. I predict a goalless draw.
Aston Villa 0 Wigan Athletic 0
ROB'S OTHER PREDICTIONS
Everton V Liverpool - This is a blood and guts derby and one which always brings with it fiery natures. I think Liverpool have the edge on this though as Everton aren't strong enough as a team to beat Liverpool.
Everton 0-2 Liverpool
Blackburn V Man City - Well, Roberto Mancini has been going on a roll of late and I think Blackburn will fall by the wayside in this game but it might be slightly tighter than what people might think as Blackburn have shown they have fighting spirit, but I see City winning.
Blackburn 1 Man City 2
Man Utd V Norwich City - Man Utd would want to banish bad memories of their draw with Basel - Norwich are right in the firing line as well, sadly for them. Their win against Sunderland was terrific but this is far too much for them to even muster a ray of hope. Man Utd shall slip at home at some point, but not to Norwich.
Man Utd 4 Norwich City 0
Sunderland V West Brom - West Brom are not in a vein of good form and look suspect to me - Sunderland have off the field issues with their defender, Titus Bramble. This might distract them a bit and have a negative impetus on the team. I just wonder because of the recent media press that this might play into West Brom's hands and they might pick up a valuable away win as Sunderland are very much Jekyll and Hyde.
Sunderland 0 West Brom 1
Wolves V Newcastle - Losing your last two home games on the trot was a poor thing for Wolves - they put in a spirited game against Spurs and an awful game against QPR, who were worthy victors on the day. Wolves had a good start but its gone flat for them of late. Newcastle have had a decent start. This is hard to call but I just wonder if Newcastle will go back with all three points.
Wolves 1 Newcastle 2
Bolton V Chelsea - Bolton are on a poor run of form, much to the joy of many Latics fans and this game is no easier for them. Andre Villas Boas' tenure has been a very mixed bag - there seems to still be a chink there. However, I don't see Bolton causing many issues for them. It won't be easy.
Bolton 1 Chelsea 3
Fulham V QPR - I'm still not convinced by Martin Jol's Fulham team - they picked up the odd good result yet are still to win a league game. QPR have gotten better and I think Fulham's wait for a win may be prolonged.
Fulham 1 QPR 1
Swansea V Stoke - I think Stoke will triumph here - they're far too strong for Swansea. Away games are very tough but I see Stoke emerging victorious in this game.
Swansea 0 Stoke 2
Tottenham V Arsenal - This is a very tasty game for the neutral. Spurs have done well of late - Arsenal have been indifferent. Adebayor faces his former club as well and he'll be looking to put a spanner in the works. However, I see a high scoring draw.
Spurs 2 Arsenal 2
ROB'S FINAL THOUGHT
Wins for Wigan and Huddersfield shall do nicely.
Date:Thursday September 29 2011
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