Wigan Athletic - Which is the better side 06/07 or 09/10 ?
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Which is the better side 06/07 or 09/10 ?

That which narrowly avoided relegation on the final day of the season beating Sheffield United 2-1 or the side we currently have battling again against the spectre of relegation.
In a purely subjective article , here is my comparison based on what I believe was/is the best starting eleven of the season`s squad


06/07 Chris Kirkland
09/10 Chris Kirkland

Is the 09/10 version better than the 06/07 one. In my opinion they are about the same. Chris ' long term injuries are well documented and he seems to be able to manage them as well now as he has in the past.

Result….a draw

Right Back

06/07 Emerson Boyce
09/10 Mario Melchiot

In 06/07 Boyce was one of several right backs used alongside Ryan Taylor and David Wright. Up until this season I would have said Mario by a mile but the captain has been off form this season and appears to have slowed measurably. On this premise I have gone for Boyce

Result…one point for 06/07

Left Back

06/07 Leighton Baines
09/10 Maynor Figueroa

A close call, both on their day exceptional full backs but Baines has the edge on consistency

Result…one point for 06/07

Centre Half !
06/07 De Zeeuw
09/10 Caldwell

Aryan had been a class act for Wigan but whilst he could still read the game well his pace was deserting him. Caldwell is a similar kind of player and since his signing has been a pivotal player for the Latics whilst also displaying excellent leadership skills.

Result…one point for 09/10

Centre Half 2

06/07 Matt Jackson
09/10 Titus Bramble

Two great servants for the club but Bramble despite the occasional howler is quicker and more decisive than Jackson was in 06/07

Result…one point for 09/10

Left Wing

06/07Lee Mc Culloch
09/10 Hugo Rodallega

Interestingly the left wing spot is occupied by two converted forwards.

Rodallega has the edge on pace but Mc Culloch was better in the air .

Result….a draw.

Centre Midfield 1

06/07 Denny Landzaat
09/10Momo Diame

Landzaat was probably the last creative midfielder that Latics have had whilst Momo is more of a defensive player. Momo`s worrying lack of fitness in the last 20 minutes of a game is a concern.

Result…one point for 06/07

Centre Midfield 2

06/07 Josip Skoko
09/10 James McCarthy

Skoko was a steady influence in midfield but never fulfilled the expectations that the club had for him and rarely completed 90 minutes.
McCarthy is an exciting young talent who has blossomed since being given a starting role in centre midfield.

Result …one point for 09/10

Right Wing
06/07 Luis Antonio Valencia
09/10 Charles N`Zogbia

N`Zogbia is the best player at the Latics this season by a mile and his assists coupled with his goals are a major reason that we aren`t in the bottom three.
Valencia at that time was very much a raw talent although there were glimpses of what he would become.

Result …one point for 09/10

Forward 1

06/07 Caleb Folan
09/10 Jason Scotland

Folan had great aerial prowess and would chase balls all day but wasn`t good enough for the Premier League.

Scotland has no aerial prowess but provides good links to the centre forward but again not premier league standard.

Result… a draw

Striekr 2

06/07 Emile Ivanhoe Heskey
09/10 Marcelo"Moreno" Martins

Big strong and powerful, Heskey was a great target man and whilst he didn`t score enough goals he did get a few.
Moreno is quicker than Heskey but is easily knocked off the ball and doesn`t look like scoring .

Result …one point for 06/07

The benches

06/07…Mike Pollitt, Ryan Taylor, Paul Scharner, Kevin Kilbane, Henri Camara, Andreas Johannson, David Unsworth

09/10 … Vladimir Stojkovic, Hendry Thomas, Jordi Gomez, Victor Moses, Emerson Boyce, Scott Sinclair, Paul Scharner

Neither bench fills me with optimism but 06.07 just has the edge with a younger more dependable Polliit as back up for Kirkland, an impact striker in Henri Camara , a utility player in Ryan Taylor and a more focussed Paul Scharner.
09/10 Has the exciting talent of Victor Moses and the ever dependable Emerson Boyce

Result …one point for 06/07

06/07 Paul Jewell
09/10 Roberto Martinez

A close call, Jewell would change his tactics whilst Martinez is very rigid in his ideas but both struggled to get the best out of their players.

Result…a draw

Final score

06/07…. 5 points
09/10 … 4 points

A close run thing. Both sides have flaws as well as strengths . Hopefully it will not come down to the last game of the season away at Chelsea but if it does then can Martinez invoke the spirit of 06/07 amongst the current crop of players ? Here`s hoping.
The Journalist

Writer: Baskerville Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday April 6 2010

Time: 1:11PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
subjective I know, if you disagree feel free to comment
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06/04/2010 13:14:00

I have the current squad 4 points ahead, for me we have better technical players now and they are on the whole a younger team but sometimes you need scrappers as well and there were more of them back in 06/07 but I am still going for the current bunch
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06/04/2010 13:24:00

This season's team is much better. If you assume that De Zeeuw and Jackson were at their career best then I agree the 06/07 team looks ok, but they were both on their last legs. How many times did we see long balls over the top and no pace at the back to cope. Likewise I remember Fitz Hall playing back there - it was pretty shocking stuff. Across the midfield we were poor. I think 2 of Scharner, Landzaat and Skoko in central midfield left us a poor side. Landzaat was never a better player than Diame. Completely disagree. I thought he was anonymous for pretty much all his time at Latics (except that Arsenal goal). Scharner was even more of a headless chicken as one central midfielder amongst 2, then he is as 1 from 3. Skoko tried hard and was solid - but not mobile enough. Then the wings - you are right Valencia was raw. He had his moments but they were too scarce. McCulloch was one dimensional out there. Gave his all, but it was the long diagonal ball to his head and not a lot else. If he'd have had pace then it would have been different, but he did not. Up front is the only area where I think 06/07 outperformed this year's lot. Heskey had a decent season overall before falling off later into his Latics career. Folan though was never a prem striker.
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06/04/2010 14:25:00

Again its subjective as points show we're worse than I think we are - man for man. But I think if we had the same squad back then and played the same system as then we'd be doing a lot better. However, I still believe that the formation and style have a future, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed we get a chance to see if I'm right to keep believing or not.
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06/04/2010 14:28:00

hope you are right, as you can see I agree with your assessment of the centre halves but our full backs were better in 06/70. Re Landzaat he was far more creative than Diame and can last 90 mins which worryingly Diame cannot, Re our current tactics, I think they are poor and a major factor in our pityful goal tally, Bob isnt going to change them though and we will stand or fall by them now, hopefully the former
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06/04/2010 14:35:00

Tactics again are subjective, we never played 4-4-2 any way, there is a fantastic article soon to be published re our tactics and their origin in Catalan and Amsterdam, look out for that ;)
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06/04/2010 16:28:00

did I mention 442? Tactics are more than a formation
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06/04/2010 16:33:00

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06/04/2010 18:11:00

No I mentioned 4-4-2
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06/04/2010 18:37:00

its subjective avant, diame is industrious and excellent defensively but tires dramatically after 70 mins or so. Landzaat was creative and a far better player going forwards but weaker on defence
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06/04/2010 18:57:00

I see what you're saying about the different type of midfielders but for me Landzaat created very little and didnt make an impact on games. Diame, on the other hand, is a very good defensive midfielder. Tactics...well my argument is based on us building something at the moment. I think that I've seen evidence of something being built this season for the long term - we've seen performances that have been extremely good. I think this team has the potential to be really decent - I'm not saying they are at the moment. Whereas in contrast I didnt see the 06/07 team as part of something bigger, it was an attempt to muddle through. The strategy was 100% to survive.
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06/04/2010 19:41:00

Landzaat did nothing in 06/07 but score that goal at Arsenal and miss an important penalty. He was a bit better in 07/08 but not too much. I don't think he ever made a forward pass either season.
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06/04/2010 22:23:00

We also had Kilbane on the left and McCulloch up front a lot of the time along with Heskey. McCulloch scored that awesome hook goal against Newcastle also.
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06/04/2010 22:24:00

There's not a lot in it but I think 06/07 was slightly better but I have a feeling Martinez will turn things around.
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06/04/2010 22:25:00

he will be turning things around in the championship
Report Abuse
07/04/2010 00:30:00


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