Wigan v United Preview
Having established an eight point gap at the top, United have a great chance to edge three points closer to the Premier League crown this Wednesday evening when they make the short trip to the DW Stadium to take on relegation threatened Wigan Athletic. Could it be another win on the road to further dampen the chances of our noisy-neighbours making a dramatic late comeback in the race for the title? We sincerely hope so!
As United close in on a record 20th title, Sir Alex Ferguson took the squad away last week to further increase that famous United spirit. Ahead of the clash, at the DW Stadium, Sir Alex recounted the small matter of a little trip to the home of golf, St Andrews, commenting,
"They`ve done well, the lads. The little trip to St Andrews was fantastic."
"I didn`t play and I`m glad because there are some bandits at our club. There`s no chance you can win. The players loved it. On the Friday about half a dozen of them had nine holes."
"It helped with the unity of the players - it was a good moment for us. It makes you realize when players stay together, they become a team very easily."
Unlike the collection of individuals across the city!
Wigan Team News:
Roberto Martinez will still be without the services of Hugo Rodallega for the trip to Old Trafford, with the player not fully recovered from a knee injury that has kept him out of recent fixtures.
But, Martinez expects Victor Moses to play with the youngster having shook off a slight knock he picked up against Chelsea.
David Jones, who has been side-lined as well, could also feature as he approaches full fitness.
Player to watch: Al Habsi
The Wigan goalkeeper had an absolute storming game at the weekend almost defying Chelsea single-handedly. It`ll need some clinical finishing to beat this lad on Wednesday evening.
United Team News:
Sir Alex Ferguson will, deep down, be quietly confident of claiming a record 20th top flight title for United, but won`t rest on his laurels. We expect Sir Alex to field his strongest available starting eleven as the United juggernaut heads towards the finish line.
Vidic, Owen, Lindegaard, Nani and Fletcher will still all be absent but the starting eleven Sir Alex does select will be full of experience, full of guile and full of the class needed to get a result. Sir Alex is too long in the tooth to let things slip now.
Player to watch: Paul Scholes
Just watch the master strut his stuff. Playing like this Scholes could go on for a few more years yet.
Match Facts & Stats
United have an impeccable record against Wigan with United winning all the 13 previous Premier League fixtures played between the two sides. But, as Michael Carrick has remarked, and with the title so close,
"It doesn`t matter what we`ve done against them in the past. What`s important is what we do tonight."
We couldn`t put it better ourselves.
Phil Dowd is the man in the middle.
So near but so far! That Premier League trophy is once more within our grasp but this is no time to count our chickens before they`ve hatched, let`s just take one game at a time. Wigan will be no walkover, prior to the unlucky defeat, at Chelsea, on Saturday they`d only lost one in eight and were in good form. Comparing the two games the sides are fresh from, it`s interesting to note that Wigan were beaten courtesy of two bad decisions from the officials whilst United benefitted from a poor decision from an official, could these things even themselves out at the DW Stadium? I think not, I reckon knowing the finishing line is in sight United will take the three points by the odd goal in three.
Another side struggling to string some results together, in the shape of Aston Villa, provide our next opposition with the struggling Midlands side visiting Old Trafford this weekend.