Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Saturday December 13 2008
Blackburn Rovers are in town today for what many pundits are predicting could be manager Paul Ince`s last game in charge
The Rovers have gone 10 games without a victory, the last win was at Newcastle on September 27th when they won 2-1 since then its been 3 draws and 7 defeats including losing their last five games.
In contrast the Latics have had a decent run of late spoilt a little last week by going down at the Emirates 1-0 all be it a little unlucky to a very shaky Arsenal side
The good news for the Latics is that Amr Zaki is back and raring to go and he has been sorely missed this last few weeks, but Wilson Palacios and Emerson Boyce are both out so we should see starts for Jason Koumas and Paul Scharner
A win today and the Latics could go as high as 8th, now that would make a nice Christmas present
Mentioning Christmas, this is the Latics last game before the 25th due to Manchester Uniteds game being cancelled with United competing in some World Club challenge, so I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas
Latics boss Steve Bruce
'I think this week is the defining week for us. If we beat Blackburn and get to 22 points before the Christmas period I'd be delighted.
'But Blackburn are always tough, and we haven't the best record against them.
'Paul Ince has fierce determination, I hope after Saturday he changes it around because he needs a bit of time.'
Rovers boss Paul Ince:
'All I can do is block it out. It is important I take the pressure away from the players and let them concentrate on 90 minutes at Wigan.
'The only way I can stop speculation is by getting three points on the board.
'I don't look at the papers, but people tell me every time you pick them up there is something about Blackburn.'
Wilson Palacios is suspended, Emerson Boyce has a tweaked hamstring and Erik Edman isnt quite ready yet
Kirkland, Taylor, Bramble, Scharner, Figueroa, Valencia, Cattermole, Brown, Koumas, Camara, Zaki, Heskey, Melchiot, Kilbane, Pollitt, Kingson, De Ridder, Cywka.
Back after missing four games and he wioll be raring to go
David Dunn is available again but defender Martin Olsson has picked up a knock and is doubtful.
Aaron Mokoena and Jason Roberts will also be available.
Robinson, Brown, Simpson, Ooijer, Samba, Nelsen, Emerton, Warnock, Mokoena, Olsson, Dunn, Tugay, Treacy, Pedersen, Roberts, Derbyshire, Villanueva, Santa Cruz, Fowler, McCarthy, Andrews.
Class act and scored a hat-trick last time he was at the JJb
Latics 5-3 Rovers
15th December 2007
Total league record
Latics 1 win, Blackburn 4, Draws 1
Howard Webb (Rotherham)
Games - 14
Yellows - 51
Reds - 4
Heart Says Latics to win 3-0
Head says Latics to win 1-0
Latics Vs Newcastle
Bolton Vs Latics
Date:Saturday December 13 2008
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