Latics secure stylish victory
In a season with more ups and down than a Florida roller coaster, Latics peaked last night with a stylish and sublime team performance to secure their first ever victory over their more illustrious opponents.
Martinsz opted to tring the changes bringing Martins into the starting line up with Rodallega dropping back onto the wing at the expense of Thomas and an enforced change due to injur, saw the ever dependable Boyce replacing Melchiot at right back and the arm band being handed over to Titus Bramble.
Latics opted for a Celtic style pre match huddle with the former hoops player Gary Caldwell ,very much at the centre of this and the evening's events as his natural leadership shone through all night.
Both teams started brightly on the newly lad DW pitch, gone were the bobbles and ruts of previous weeks and a passing game not seen for weeks was very much the order of the day.
The firsdt real chance fell to Liverpool, when Torres fired a shot which hit the outside of the post although Kirkland was well placed had the shot been on target.
Latics were undaunted and with the central defenders providing a rock solid partnership and both full backs, espicailly Boyce pushing forward at every opportunity Latics soon began to exert their superiority.
The midfield were awesome with Diame and McCarthy continuing to develop their wonderful understanding and it is no exaggeration to say that they dominated their more seasoned opponents.
On the wings both Hugo and the Zog gave the full backs a torrid time and lone forward Martins showed his willingnness to chase every ball.
Latics first real chance came from a free kick by Rodallega, which sailed harmlessly over the bar but most of the possession was from Wigan with Liverpool increasingly on the back foot and resorting to some last ditch fouls one particulary from Lucas earning the Brazilian a well deserved yellow card.
As stated once again N'Zogbia was our most dangerous outlet and a superb fizzing cross across the face of the goal just beat the lunging boot of Martins.
The Latics support didnt have to wait too long for a goal as a poor pass in defence from Kuyt was intercepted by Boyce, who curled a cross with the outside of his right foot and Rodallega with his left foot fired the ball across Riena into the net for his first goal since November.
Scharner who was a doubt before the game continued to suffer as he was singled out for some particular harsh challenges from the Liverpool team and this resulted in a couple of more bookings as Liverpool gradually lost their discipline.
Latics ended the first half very much the dominant force and exited the playing arena to a creschendo of applause .
Wigan fans and the team were in no doubt that Liverpool would have a half time roasting and this proved the case with the reds tearing into a Wigan team, that seemed content to play 4-6-0 at times and look to catch Liverpool on the break.
At the back for Wigan, Caldwell and especially Bramble conintued to deal with everything Loiverpool threw at them and at the other end the Liverpool defence was force to clear a deflected header from under the bar.
Latics midifled was quite simply outstanding and Diame and McCarthy further enhanced their growing reputation.
The final whistle brought to an end a pulsating enthralling game played at a high tempo on a good pitch.
What was pleasing was that the lack of team spirit alluded to on various radio shows and on tv ( and by a few punters including yours truly) was nowhere to be seen as the players gave their all for the fans, themselves and for Martinez to secure a long overdue and well deserved victory.