Friday, 13 January 2012

Wigan Athletic v Manchester City preview.

After a very disappointing first half against Liverpool and a distinct lack of cutting edge in the 2nd half, Wigan away is probably one of the best places to go right now for a game to build up your confidence again. I mean that with respect of course, but there is no denying that Wigan aren't having a great season.

They have never been much of a threat to the usual top teams and have finished outside the top 10 all but once since their first season in the Premier League in 2005-06.This season they are currently 2nd from bottom and firmly in a relegation fight with another 5 or so teams, have the joint 3rd worst home scoring record with 10 goals, and 3rd worst home defensive record as they have conceded 2 goals on average in each game.

Although I'm not a fan of Wigan, I do feel for Roberto Martinez as he is one of the more dignified managers in the league despite struggling with the difficulties of the quite obvious financial restraints he has to work within and players he is able to attract.

It is teams such as Wigan that are the ones City need to be consistently beating but since Wigan were were promoted the league record against them isn't particularly great (W5-D3-L5), however after being a bogey team in the past the last 4 meetings have seen City score 9 goals without reply.

City will of course be missing Vincent Kompany (suspended) as well as Kolo and Yaya Toure (international duty). Their are questions over the fitness of Mario Balotelli as he certainly didn't look 100% before being subbed off in the 1st half against Liverpool, and David Silva is the other concern after suffering an ankle injury a week ago.

Despite this, City undoubtedly have the quality to beat Wigan and they must prepare for yet another team to park the bus. When even the likes of Liverpool play with a back 5 and end the game with 6 defenders on the pitch against you it tells its own story about how teams feel about your attacking threat.

Earlier in the season City just brushed this aside but teams are becoming more and more resolute in their defending and it's no surprise that in recent weeks this tactic has yielded results for City's opponents. It's not a tactic Martinez is known to use but I wouldn't blame him or be surprised if he does on Monday night.

With the possibility of Wigan playing on the counter attack, perhaps one of the key players will in fact be Stefan Savic and despite his shaky start and giving away a penalty he didn't have a particularly bad game, but he did look nervous  throughout which is unlike him. Although not tested as often as Kompany in City and Liverpool's previous meeting, Stefan managed to keep Andy Carroll pretty quiet. His performances have been a little mixed but that is to be expected as he hasn't had regular football and it is his first season in the league.

Behind the scenes Vinnie could be a great aid to him at this time as his qualities as club captain stretch beyond match day and onto the training ground. His shoes are particularly large ones to fill but I hope he has a word in Stefan's ear to let him know that the lads are backing him.

I know there are absolutely no easy games in the Premier League and anything can happen on any given day but City really need a good win to kick start their season again after a sketchy run of results. There are also a small number of players in the squad that really need to step up to the mark too after several rather under-par performances.

Twitter: @MikeWalsh1880 or @mcfcDSLeftFoot
Facebook: David Silva's Left Foot

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments containing abusive, foul or discriminatory language will not be published.