Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Saturday December 17 2011
The Latics entertain Chelsea this afternoon with the vast majority of the sporting world tipping a comfortable Chelsea win, why not? They are Champions League contenders, up to 3rd spot in the Premier League having just beaten runaway leaders Man City and boast a squad full of world class stars. Chelsea though appear to be one of those teams that, having done the hard bit, beating City, then go and shoot themselves in the foot.
Let's just hope that we can surprise them, catch them off guard and put in a performance that belittles our league position, last week's great result at West Brom needs to be followed up and I am going against the sporting world and tipping a draw at the DW today
Latics boss Roberto Martinez:
'They (Chelsea) have a great group of experience players who are coming to the DW Stadium off the back of two great results; beating the league leaders Manchester City and getting through to the knockout stages of the Champions League by beating Valencia.
'It is going to be an exciting game and I think it really shows that when we play against a team like Chelsea that Wigan Athletic as a club is competing at the highest level.
'We need to be very stubborn and we need to make sure that we work very hard to make it difficult from them to play their game.
'We also need to find the right ways to hurt them and make sure that we can be a threat in the final third.'
Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas:'It will be the first time in the Premier League we have a chance to go on a run of four straight wins, and a motivated Wigan will try to threaten us'
'If we can get the win we want and expect it means maybe we are in our best period of the season.'
Antolin Alcaraz faces a late fitness test, otherwise it's all systems go
Latics probable:Al-Habsi; Stam, Alcaraz, Caldwell, Figueroa, Jones; McCarthy, Diame, Gomez, Moses, Sammon
Young Vic had an excellent game at West Brom and scored a cracking goal, more of the same today please
By permission of Bernard Platt/Wigan Athletic
Michael Essien is still out but David Luiz returns following suspension
Chelsea possible: Cech, Ivanovic, Luiz, Terry, Cole, Romeu, Ramires, Meireles, Mata, Drogba, Sturridge.
Latics and Chelsea have met 17 times
Latics 3 wins, Chelsea 12, draws 2
Martin Atkinson (Bradford)
Why not check out our excellent 'Meet The Ref' article
Martin Atkinson Card Watch 2011/12
Games -19, yellows 78, reds 8...great!
My head says Chelsea win 2-0
Heart says gutsy performance and a 1-1 draw
Latics v Liverpool
Manchester United v Latics
Latics and Proud
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Date:Saturday December 17 2011
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