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Arsenal 1-2 Wigan - Latics at it Again

1 - 2
Wigan Athletic

Emirates Stadium

16/04/12 8pm

Attendance: 60,060


First half strikes from Franco Di Santo and Jordi Gomez, ensured that Wigan recorded yet another memorable victory, and in the process moved five points clear of the drop. Roberto Martinez`s men have now taken a huge step towards yet another great escape and ended a miserable run of defeats in the capital.

Di Santo's determination and fantastic vision from Gomez were at the heart of the opener, with the former Chelsea front man finishing coolly after beating Wojciech Szczesny. Within two minutes the visitors lead was doubled, with man of the match Victor Moses leaving Andre Santos in his wake, before Gomez bundled home for his fifth strike of the season.

The home side were clearly alarmed and responded by dominating the remainder of the first half, and were back in the game, through Thomas Vermaelen`s powerful header. As Arsenal continued to press the Latics had to rely on keeper Ali Al Habsi, who did well to deny Yossi Benayoun and Robin Van Persie.

Half time was welcomed by Martinez and his men and provided them with the opportunity to re-group. They continued to stick to their game plan and unlike the first half reverted from sitting back on their lead.

The midfield duo of James McArthur and James McCarthy were fantastic and provided a solid base for both defence and attack during the second half. Moses was a real handful for the Arsenal backline and perhaps should have restored the two goal deficit, when he did well following a long throw but shot too early.

Captain Gary Caldwell led his team and alongside Antolin Alcaraz was immense. There was a real determination that they would not leave London empty handed following their contentious defeat to Chelsea last week.

In a somewhat surprise choice, last week`s hero Shaun Maloney made way for Gomez in the starting XI and it proved to be a masterstroke from Martinez. Substitutes Connor Sammon and Mohamed Diame, were excellent and ran the hard yards and bought precious time as they weathered the Arsenal storm. The Wigan backline held firm, and the only real moment of concern was when Maynor Figueroa appeared to barge England international Theo Walcott off the ball.

Following their home defeat to Swansea many believed that Wigan's stay In the top flight was due to come to an end. To his credit owner Dave Whelan held firm and did not panic. He believed then and even more so now, that Martinez is the man to steer his club clear of the drop.

With results elsewhere going for the Latics they now find themselves five points clear of the drop. With four games left to play they have taken a huge leap to securing yet another season in the greatest league in the world.

Niall Owens

To read more from Niall visit his blog


Arsenal - Szczesny, Sagna, Djourou (Oxlade-Chamberlain 74), Vermaelen, Santos, Arteta (Ramsey 9), Song, Rosicky, Benayoun (Gervinho 61), Walcott, Van Persie
Unused Subs: Fabianski, Squillaci, Gibbs, Chamakh

Latics - Al Habsi, Boyce, Alcaraz, Caldwell, Figueroa, Beausejour, McArthur, McCarthy, Gomez (Diame 86), Moses, Di Santo (Sammon 75)
Unused Subs: Pollitt, Stam, Watson, Jones, McManaman

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Writer:Niall Owens
Date:Monday April 16 2012
Time: 11:43PM


One question, how good are we?
16/04/2012 23:46:00
Fair play, an excellent performance from you guys. In the second half, I don't really recall us creating a chance. You were very good value for the win.
Little Dutch
17/04/2012 07:45:00
I was downcast when I heard at the beginning of the match that Maloney was injured and wouldn't be taking part - he's been at the centre of our resurgence. But though we might have extended our lead with him, it was fantastic to see the confidence the rest of the team had. However, someone needs to take Moses on one side and teach him how to shoot - the number of times he does the difficult work and then hits a feeble shot directly at the keeper is frightening.
17/04/2012 08:15:00
Gooner here. Credit where its due, a tactical masterclass from Martinez. wenger can't say he wasn'nt warned! good luck for the rest of the campaign.
Wyn Mills
17/04/2012 15:08:00
Well done Wigan. Shows that nice guys do win. Your manager is a real gent and a credit to your club, unlike the odious Wenger and Von Pervie, who once again reverted to type when losing. Typical A**e arrogance.
17/04/2012 17:17:00
Well done guys - outplayed us Utd lot, and played these Gooners off the park, much deserved - Gratz lads!
17/04/2012 18:06:00
Thanks people
17/04/2012 23:51:00
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