Date:Saturday September 26 2009
DW Stadium , Wigan
A tremendous performance full of pride, commitment and not a little skill enabled Latics to secure a win against one of the top four for the first time in thirty five attempts thereby handing Ancelotti his first defeat in charge of Chelsea.
Roberto Martinez responded to last week`s abject performance at Arsenal by dropping Koumas and Gomez to the bench, replacing them with Scotland and Scharner and amending the line up by playing Scotland up front and moving Roddallega onto the left wing.
Chelsea started the game with confidence as befits a side unbeaten in the Premier League this season and had two half chances within the first five minutes to Essien and Anelka
Latics, with Thomas and Diame up against Lampard and Mikel gave their more illustrious opponents little opportunity to shine and with Scharner`s roving role , Chelsea were not allowed to settle into a pattern.
Up front Scotland made up for his limitations with a bulldozing performance which enabled Roddallega to cut in from the wing in support.
At the back all four played well with man of the match Bramble quite magnificent.
Martinez has called for the rest of the team to chip in with goals so he must have been delighted when Latics open the scoring when Brable reacted first to a short corner move between Roddallega and N`Zogbia to score past a static Chelsea defence.
The rest of the first half saw the Latics dominate with Anelka and Drogba looking to catch Wigan on the break.
In truth Latics should have added tot heir tally before half time but Boyce shot tamely at Cech form inside the six yard box.
The second half started like a whirlwind , when a ball into the area hit Drogba and slid through Kirkland`s hands into the net, with Kirkland openly acknowledging his mistake, Chelsea were back level which they performance scarcely deserved.
The turning point in the game came in the 50th minutes when the ever dangerous Roddallega cut in from the left and as he rounded Cech he went over the keeper`s out stretched leg. Referee Phil Dowd saw this as a professional foul, awarded a penalty and sent the keeper off.
Roddallega kept his cool in the face of blatant gamesmanship by Chelsea to coolly slot the ball past Hilario to restore a deserved lead.
Chelsea pushed forward in search of an equaliser with Latics forced into some last ditch defending and looking to catch Chelsea on the break. N`Zogbia and Scotland were both guilty of failing to make the most of good through ball, their final passes not finding their own players when Wigan had men to spare.
Chelsea who had sued their three substitutes were further reduced to nine men when Cole limped off. Wigan took advantage when Figueroa made a great run down the left, as the defence opened up he coolly slotted the ball past Hilario. The ball appeared to be going in but Scharner , ever the true professional made sure burying the ball in the back of the net.
It was game over and when Dowd blew the final whistle the tremendous Wigan support lifted the roof in celebration of breaking the top four hoodoo with a thoroughly deserved win.
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Date:Saturday September 26 2009
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