Date:Sunday May 24 2009
JJB Stadium, Wigan
Latics completed their second double of the season with what in the end was a comfortable victory, over a Portsmouth team who had secured safety a couple of weeks ago.
A game played in the sunshine in sharp contrast to the game at Fratton Park, was sealed by one of the easiest goals Hugo Rodellega will ever score.
Steve Bruce made several changes to the side that capitualted against Stoke, with Scharner out injured and Cho relegated to the bench to be replaced by De Ridder.
Also on the bench, Bruce placed his faith in youth with Routledge, Kupisz and McManemen making up the numbers along with Watson, Edman and Pollitt.
There was no place for Koumas and Kapo and question marks must be raised as to their future at Wigan.
Wigan started well with Valencia possibly playing his last game for Wigan giving Hriedersson a torrid time. The big Icelander respoded by clogging Valencia, something he spent most of the game doing.
Valencia created the first chance for Rodellega but Hugo couldn't keep his shot down.
At the other end, player of the season Titus Bramble once again led the defensive line giving England striker Peter Crouch no quarter.
De Ridder showed his obvious class with a superbly taken free kick, which stand in Pompey keeper Begovic did well to tip over the bar.
WIgan attacked with purpose but all too often De Ridder and N'Zogbia, either required too long on the ball or their final pass was wayward.
In contrast Valencia showed his colleagues how to play and his link play with Melchiot was a joy to watch.
In centre midfield, Cattermole was once again the stand out player and managed to get through the game without being booked, which is three games on the trot and surely a personal best!
Rodellega almost scored when Begovic took the ball off his head when Hugo seemed certain to score.
Hugo didn't have to wait long for his third goal in four games. A cross from N'Zogbia wasn't cleared by Campbell and the keeper and the ball rolled across the goal for Hugo to have a simple tap in.
De Ridder looked certain to score but he took too long and Hughes nicked the ball off his toe.
The second half was much of the same, with Wigan the dominant side with Melchiot, Valencia and Rodellega all going close.
Pompey offered very little going forward and their Wigan born manager, Paul Hart cannot have been happy with their lack of attacking cohesion.
towards the end Steve Bruce gave a debut to 18 year old Callum Mcmanamne and he looked sharp and linked well with his peers.
Full time came with cheers of relief at the first win in eight games, which was matched a few minutes later when the news that Newcastle had been relegated came through.
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Date:Sunday May 24 2009
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