League Cup Memories - Whelan Wants Wembley
Wigan Athletic owner Dave Whelan is hoping that the Latics can go on a cup run and emulate the team of 2006, by reaching the final of the competition that has provided Latics fans with some superb memories down the years
The League cup, known this season has the Capital One cup, is a competition that has seen the club sparkle in, who can forget the memorable games back in the 1981/82 season when Chelsea were destroyed at Springfield Park by Division Four Latics, a great performance and four great goals saw a famous 4-2 victory, against a Chelsea side that had Chris Hutchings at full back, but this game was put in the shadows in the next round, even if we were going to lose
Aston Villa, league champions, the team that would be crowned European champions at the end of that season rolled up, Latics played their illustrious opponents off the park, a Peter Houghton screamer had given us a 1-0 lead, unfortunately a Peter Withe goal and a dive by Gary Shaw to earn a penalty that Gordon Cowans dispatched with just minutes remaining put an end to a brave and memorable cup run
Villa had another former Latics manager in their side that night, Kenny Swain, also a full back, coincidences!
2006 saw perhaps our greatest ever League cup game though, the semi-final second leg away at Arsenal
After beating the Gunners 1-0 at the DW in the first leg, the Latics travelled to Highbury with hopes of getting at least a draw to go through and make the final, unfortunately some very dodgy refereeing by our old mate Phil Dowd and with the home crowd in full song it was the Arsenal that took the lead with a Thierry Henry goal after 65 minutes.
A fantastic penalty save by Mike Pollitt ensured the game went into extra time, but when Robin van Persie put the home side 2-0 up in the 2nd half of extra time it looked like that was it
Jason Roberts had other ideas and when his shot hit the back of Almunia's net with just one minute of the game remaining the Latics had done enough to progress to the final on the away goals rule, a fantastic occasion and a great night to be a Latics fan.
Now Dave Whelan is hoping that we can make some more memories this season and with a bit of luck tonight we will be in the last 16
Speaking to the Wigan Evening Post Whelan said - 'Wembley still has that magic about it - there's no question that every footballer wants to play football in a cup final or for England'
'It's fantastic - the pinnacle of any player's career.
'Every game is important, although I have to say the league is what we are more concentrated on at the moment.
'Games like this give us the chance to play a few of the younger lads, and against Nottingham Forest in the last round I thought they were superb.
'I'm sure Roberto will once again be giving a few of the lads who haven't been playing every week the chance to show what they can do, and I think they're up to it.
'It is a very important game for us, because we are in the last 16 if we can get through.
'Let's get a result, let's get through to the next round, and we're one step closer to Wembley.'
Latics and Proud
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