Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Sunday March 28 2010
Wigan Athletic travel 15 miles down the East Lancashire Road to take on local rivals Manchester City in a game that could have massive implications for both clubs for very different reasons.
Latics are sitting nervously in 16th spot in the Premier League just 4 points ahead of Hull City who occupy the last relegation spot that is realistically up for grabs if you consider that Pompey and Burnley both look doomed.
A win for the Latics would increase that gap to 7 points and also see Martinez` team climb two places up the table and make life a lot more bearable as the season draws to a close, defeat and the beads of perspiration would significantly increase as the tension begins to mount.
City meanwhile have aspirations of a top four finish and following good wins for both Spurs and Liverpool over the weekend Mancini will want to get a win to keep his side in touch for that coveted Champions League qualifying place.
Latics have a good record against City in recent years; indeed since being promoted to the Premier League in 2005 we have only tasted defeat once and have a set of results to be proud of, 5 wins, 3 draws and just that 1 defeat, more of the same please.
Latics boss Roberto Martinez
'Man City have plenty of strength in their side and different dimensions that can hurt you in many ways. If we want to compete against that and achieve that goal we'll have to be at our very best.'
Ireland is doubtful whilst Bridge, M Johnson, Lescott and Petrov are all out.
Given; Richards, Vieira, Toure, Kompany, Zabaleta, A Johnson, Santa Cruz, Ireland, Wright-Phillips, De Jong, Barry, Bellamy, Tevez, Taylor, Onuoha, Garrido, Sylvinho.
World class player
Emerson Boyce should be fine but Charles N'Zogbia is struggling.
Kirkland; Melchiot, Caldwell, Bramble, Figueroa, McCarthy, Scharner, Scotland, Diame, Thomas, Moses, Moreno, Rodallega, Stojkovic, Gohouri, Amaya, Gomez, Sinclair, Boyce, N'Zogbia
McCarthy has been fantastic since the New Year and his energy in midfield will be vital if the Latics are to get anything out of the game
Latics and City have met on 18 previous occasions
Latics 6 wins, City 7, draws5
Last Five Meetings
18/10/09 - Premier League - Latics 1 City 1
17/01/09 - Premier League - City 1 Latics 0
28/09/08 - Premier League - Latics 2 City 1
01/03/08 - Premier League - City 0 Latics 0
01/12/07 - Premier League - Latics 1 City 1
Stuart Attwell (Nuneaton)
Why not check out our meet the ref article right here
Head says 1-1
Heart says we could srape a win 1-0
Date:Sunday March 28 2010
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