TOTTENHAM-WIGAN ATHLETIC PREVIEW – NOT DOWN AND OUT

A game against Tottenham at White Hart Lane would appear a daunting task for a struggling team which has not won in its last 7 league matches. Tottenham currently stand third in the table and have lost only one of their 11 home games this season. Are this Latics team that has kept only one clean sheet in 19 games in for a thumping?

We remain in a doom and gloom period with relegation staring us in the face. Not only are we bottom of the Premier League but we have a lot of players out of contract at the end of the season. Rodallega may well go in the next 24 hours, but it would be depressing for the club to lose a player like Diame for nothing, given all the work that has been put in to developing him into the well balanced player he is today. If it were not for his presence in the African Nations Cup maybe he would have been subject to the January sales too? It sounds like he will be going at the end of the season, as also could Maynor Figueroa, Jordi Gomez, Steve Gohouri and Chris Kirkland. There is a significant amount of angry and negative stuff being banded about the internet by Latics followers – not surprising given current circumstances – but writing off particular players as being not up to par is not going to help anybody. Playing in a struggling team affects the confidence of all the players and only the goalkeeper, Ali Al Habsi, has managed to play consistently well in this underperforming team.

Let’s keep the faith! After all what have Wigan Athletic got to lose in this Tottenham match? When you are counted out by so many people and are seemingly at rock bottom where do you go? It could be that we get a performance like that of the 9-1 White Hart Lane thumping in Martinez’ first season. Or maybe the opposite – like the 1-0 win in his second? The team news is that Defoe and Lennon – both of whom have caused so much damage to us in previous seasons – are injury doubts. For Wigan the return of David Jones from injury could mean a return to the three centre halves system. In the continued absence of Alcaraz the three would most likely be Boyce, Caldwell and Figueroa. The skilful new signing Jean Beausejour could appear at some stage of the proceedings.

Sometimes when you feel you have nothing to lose then you approach things in a different way. Hopefully that will be the case tonight and Wigan Athletic will defy the bookmakers heavy odds and get a result at Tottenham. More importantly let’s defy the odds and stay in the Premier League this season – we are by no means down and out yet!