This game was, quite simply, a must win for Latics. Anything other than three points would make the task of remaining in the Premier League for at least one more season an incredible task in all likelihood beyond a side struggling to find the target, let alone score. Though it can’t be denied our performances have actually improved of late, the wins haven’t there to back them up, rendering such games all but fruitless in the harsh reality of England’s toppermost league.
Any number of football pundits will get paid for telling you it’s impossible to win a game without scoring. I would contest this statement, as it is perfectly possible to win 1-0 having forced the other team into an embarrassing own goal, and come to think of it that wouldn’t be that bad a tactic: at least it would ultimately result in our ‘goals for’ column increasing.
Two goals in six competitive games would suggest a side deserving of bottom spot in the table, but that run did include tough encounters with Man United, Man City, Tottenham and Chelsea — and it must be stated that the league’s bottom side acquitted themselves relatively well in the majority of those games. Apart from against Man U, they were never really properly hammered. From here onwards, things become more manageable with potential point-gaining opportunities against mid- and lower-table teams.
Each and every contest from now until 22 May has to be regarded as must-win, and most importantly of all, you have to score. It seems like an awful long time since Wigan took an early lead and consolidated for what could be termed a comfortable win, and that’s because it was four months ago.
There was some hope, though. 29 goals in 31 games may represent a paltry effort when you consider today’s opponents scored a whopping 46 in the same period. Unfortunately for the Tangerines, all that endeavour only resulted in them sitting two points ahead of Latics in the league table before proceedings got underway at Bloomfield Road today. The figures (which, admittedly, must always be taken in context and with a pinch of salt) point to an equally dodgy Blackpool defence, the only reason they were just one place above the relegation zone prior to 3pm this afternoon, and provided huge incentive for a goal-starved Wigan attack line.Blackpool, Premier League, Report