Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Sunday March 22 2009
Steve Bruce goes in to the game with Hull City knowing a win for his Latics team will catapult them back up to 7th in the table and leapfrog Spurs, Fulham and West Ham
Lee Cattermole will be missing and Antonio Valencia is a major doubt with a tightening of his hamstring this week but the big talking point regarding team selection will be around Paul Scharner
The madcap Austrian is on 99 Premier League appearances for the Latics and to become a centurion would surely be marked by something extravagant by Herr Scharner.
Returning to the JJB today is old friend Kevin Kilbane and it will be good to see him back, not the most gifted of players but you always got 100% from Killer and he had a good 2 ½ years at the club.
Although this should be a home win Hull will prove to be no pushovers and early this week Bruce said 'if you go looking for a fight then Hull will give it to you`, what we need to do is play them off the park, keep the ball wide with N`Zogbia and if playing Valencia and get around their back-line creating chances for Mido and Zaki
Sunday lunch on Mothers Day will thankfully consist of a Steak Pie and a lot of manly chat lets just hope the entertainment is just as fulfilling.
Latics boss Steve Bruce:
'With nine games to go it would be nice to kick on. If we can get a win against Hull it would be a fantastic platform from where we could go and enjoy and express ourselves
'A finish in the top 10 would be fantastic. I think anyone who has watched us for six or seven months will know we have been highly competitive.
'Hull got a magical result at Fulham. I would have feared for them had they not got that in the last minute
'Getting the result at Fulham has given them their edge back. I went to watch them against Arsenal (in the FA Cup) on Tuesday and they were highly competitive.
'They are having a right good go at it to try to make sure they remain Premier League players.
'They have a good chance and they will be looking at Sunday's match as a very good opportunity too.'
Hull boss Phil Brown:
'We seem to be getting up people's noses. Hopefully we can do that on Sunday against Wigan.
'We conduct ourselves the way we conduct ourselves, and have done throughout the season. If you don't like it then it's your problem to get over.
'We're in nine battles and I suppose a siege mentality is important, not just the 11 players who go out but the whole changing room and the city of Hull.'
Lee Cattermole serves the 2nd of his 4 match ban whilst Antonio Valencia is a slight doubt with his troubled hamstring.
Kirkland, Melchiot, Scharner, Bramble, Figueroa, Watson, N'Zogbia, Valencia, Kapo, Zaki, Mido, Pollitt, Edman, Brown, Boyce, Rodallega, Sibierski, De Ridder, Koumas.
If he plays today Scharner will achieve his 100th Premier League game for the Latics and he is sure to mark the occasion with something very eccentric
Ian Ashbee is out whilst Michael Turner and Anthony Gardner are rated as 50/50.
Myhill, Ricketts, Turner, Gardner, Dawson, Mendy, Kilbane, Marney, Zayatte, Garcia, Geovanni, Manucho, Cousin, Barmby, Fagan, Folan, Featherstone, Hughes, France, Duke.
The ex Manchester City player has been in good form of late and he can always produce something a little different
Earlier this season
Hull City 0-5 Wigan Athletic
30th August 2008
Referee - Michael Jones
Total League: Latics 4 wins, Hull 4, Draws 5
Andre Marriner (West Midlands)
Games - 19
Yellows - 64
Reds - 4
Heart says Latics to win 3-1
Head says much closer 1-0 Latics win
Everton Vs Latics
Sunday 5/04/09 3pm
Latics Vs Arsenal
Saturday 11/04/09 3 pm
Date:Sunday March 22 2009
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