Fifth-placed Wigan travel to sixteenth Fulham who, as their league position suggests are in the midst of an inconsistent period. Their last ten matches have seen 4 wins, 1 draw and 5 defeats. The hosts spent just under £9m on transfer deadline day, bringing in Neal Eardley (Blackpool), Jelle Vossen (Genk), Martin Fillo (Viktoria Plzen). Wigan may look to give debuts to Alex Serrano (Sporting Lisbon) and McDonald Mariga (Inter) who signed as the window closed.
Wigan manager GS was keen to praise Ben Watson’s form, and the fans backing of the player, in recent matches during the pre-match press conference. The local media also asked about the recent signings and GS stated that he was keen to build for the future.
Manager GS runner-up in the Manager Award, which went to West Ham boss Sam Allardyce.
I can’t bear to bring myself to type out a full match report, so I’ll leave the match statistics and live tweets here, absolutely abysmal.
Live tweets courtesy of @realtimeFM:
GS 02/02: MATCHDAY – Squad numbers given to back-from-loan Albert Crusat (24) and Alex Serrano (27) who makes his debut for the Latics.
Wigan get us underway at Fulham. Mike Jones is today’s referee.
34 seconds played and after WA’s attack breaks down, debutant Alex Serrano is shown a yellow card for impeding Hughes. THIRTY FOUR SECONDS.
8′ First corner of the match goes to the home side, and Berbatov is unlucky with a towering header.
13′ 1-0 Fulham. A deserved lead when Eardley sends the ball into the area for Dimitar BERBATOV to take a touch to set then drill home low.
28′All Fulham here as we approach the half-hour, but little to report other than the goal. Steve Sidwell enjoying kicking the Wigan midfield.
30′ John Guidetti is out clean through b his first touch is heavy and Stockdale narrowly beats him to scoop up the ball.
34′ Serrano’s afternoon cut short with a knock, Caldwell replaces and the Wigan midfield shuffle into a diamond.
42′ 2-0 Fulham. The hosts’ 7th corner is nodded down at far post and PETIC absolutely buries a half-volley past Al-Habsi. It was coming!
44′ Yellow for Fulham’s Ruiz for clattering Crusat on Wigan’s left wing.
HT: Maloney replaces Crusat for Wigan. First half stats: Fulham 2-0 Wigan, Shots 9-4, Target 6-0, Possession 54/46%, Corners 7-1.
48′ Berbatov drills one home from 15 yards but the flag is correctly raised on the near side. Fulham come out all guns blazing.
56′ Orhan Ademi replaces Antolin Alcaraz as Wigan use their third substitution, trailing 2-0 at Craven Cottage.
61′ 3-0 Fulham. Boyce dithers bringing the ball out of defence, losing the ball to Steve SIDWELL who goes unchallenged and slots home.
67′ Former Wigan favourite Hugo Rodellega comes on for Fulham as part of a double-substitution.
77′ Berbatov stretchered off after a hefty challenge from Wigan skipper Gary Caldwell.
89′ Chris Baird also stretchered off following a collision with Shaun Maloney. Two minutes to be added on, all one-way traffic. Wigan POOR.
FULL TIME: Fulham 3-0 Wigan. Not sure if I can even bring myself to do a match report. Wigan truly woeful. GS’s week to date to follow.
POST-MATCH ADMIN, MIDWEEKS:
- GS 06/02: Holland 1-1 England (Friendly).
- Wigan’s FA Cup 5th Round tie moved to 1730 on 16/02 for TV coverage.
- Wigan’s next match is at Old Trafford on Saturday 9th February. Oh lord.