Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Saturday October 18 2008
Wigan Athletic head in to this afternoons game with Liverpool at Anfield hoping to overturn a poor result from their last game, a defeat at home to Middlesbrough despite dominating the game.
Latics have had limited success at Anfield since entering the Premier League with 2 defeats and a draw, the draw coming last season with a tremendous equalising goal by Titus Bramble in the 80th minute of the game.
This year though the Latics are a different proposition to what they have previously been and we now carry real quality right through the team, we also have ex-Liverpool favourites Emile Heskey and Chris Kirkland bang in form so a 'surprise` could well be on the cards today.
The biggest concern for Latics boss Steve Bruce will be how well his travelling internationals have recovered from their exploits this past week with Wilson Palacios and Maynor Figueroa only returning back to the UK yesterday Bruce might well be tempted to change the team around a little
Whatever side Bruce does put out lets hope they put on a performance and carry on the good work and standards so far set this season
Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez:
'It's important to think about the next three points.
Latics boss Steve Bruce:
'We have proved that we can match anyone on our day and we will go there on Saturday full of confidence.
'The game at Anfield last year was a real benchmark, when we showed that as a team we can compete with the very best.
'We need to aim high. Last season was a great result but we have to believe that we can match that again, or even go one better. That has to be the aim.'
'These games after the international break are always very dangerous and everybody knows we have to win.
'We must concentrate and take it one game at a time because if you talk about the other games in the future then you will lose your concentration.'
Fernando Torres and Ryan Babel are both missing after picking up injuries in the midweek international games
Reina, Arbeloa, Carragher, Hyypia, Agger, Aurelio, Dossena, Benayoun, Gerrard, Alonso, Mascherano, Riera, Kuyt, Keane, Ngog, Pennant, Lucas, Cavalieri.
Not had the best of starts to his Liverpool career but will probably be playing as a more central striker today with Torres missing and he always scores against us
Jason Koumas and Paul Scharner are facing fitness tests, Amr Zaki and Emile Heskey are hoping to be fit following injury scares and Wilson Palacios and Maynor Figueroa are expected to play despite only arriving back in the UK yesterday
Although our glamour players are a joy to be hold and Zaki is setting the Premier League on fire I feel todays game for the Latics may hinge on the performance of defensive midfield player Cattermole, he is strong in the tackle and can play a bit
Liverpool 1-1 Latics
2nd January 2008
Referee Steve Bennett
In the 6 games that Latics and Liverpool have met in the league Liverpool have won 5 and there has been 1 draw
Alan Wiley (Stafforshire)
Games - 5
Yellows - 12
Reds - 0
Heart says 1-2 Latics win
Head says 1-1
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Sunday 26th October 3 pm
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