On Sunday, I watched Robinho’s Manchester City visit the JJB, and come away with no points after an impressive display by Wigan.
Wigan look like a team that will cause a lot of teams problems – having watched them against Chelsea, when they shut Chelsea down after going behind to a free kick, this time they worked hard but were more attacking. Zaki looks like a fantastic player, honest and hard working, and is fast becoming one of my favourite players in the Premier League for his attitude. Unfortunately, his form is likely to become Wigan’s loss as he is only on loan, and if he keeps up performing like this, he is likely to be plying his trade at a “bigger” club next season.
Wigan were strong and athletic, always harrying Man City and giving the likes of Wright-Phillips and Robinho little time on the ball to carve out chances. Wigan took the lead with a pile-driver from Valencia, one of those goals that demands a reaction from those watching. They didn’t hold on to it for long, conceding a soft goal from a corner as the ball rebounded off Kompany and into the net.
Wigan restored their deserved lead in an undeserved fashion, getting a soft penalty for an apparent dive by Palacios, which was despatched by the impressive Zaki. Wigan sat back in the second half and were content to close down Man City, who were unable to break a stubborn Wigan side down. Wigan look like a solid mid-table team, who are stuck between a rock and a hard place – they look to strong this year to be sucked into the relegation mire, and not quite good enough to challenge for a European spot. Outside chance for the League Cup perhaps? One thing is for sure, no team is going to look forward to playing them, they aren’t the push-over for the bigger sides they have been in the previous two seasons.