Wigan: Match Report

In theory we should all be moaning about the loss of two points and the fact that we have only scored one goal in open play in three games. In theory we should be worried that we haven’t been able to beat teams like Wigan and Manchester City. In theory. But I take a lot of positives out of today. We dominated the game in a way I have rarely seen. We passed. We looked like a team who had played together before, in stark contrast to the Manchester City game. We tackled as if we meant it and although the final pass sometimes didn’t come, there was great movement in the side.

I felt that our forward players did well, although Bobby Zamora lost out to often and his shooting boots had been left at home. Matty Etherington was simply outstanding at times and with Kieron Dyer wreaking havoc down the right it was a mystery as to how we didn’t score in the first half.

The other highlight of the game was Mark Noble. He was everywhere – taking free kicks, corners, shooting at will, tackling as if he meant it. Dean Ashton showed some delightful touches when he came on with half an hour to go. He should have been on from the beginning. If he had been, I’m pretty sure we would have gone in a goal up. He has such a great touch for such a big man. His body is simply awesome. When he took his training shirt off all you could see were rippling muscles under his stretch vest. He still looks a tad heavy, but he needs match practice, not half an hour here and there. It’s great news that Curbishley has said he will start against Bristol Rovers on Tuesday.

Anyway, much as I would like to have got another two points, let’s remember we are above Spurs and Man U are in the drop zone. We have four points out of nine. Thay ratio would give us 51 points at the end of the season…

And so to the points

Green 8 had little to do. Was not to blame for the goal
Ferdinand 8 Did brilliantly keeping Heskey quiet
Upson 7 Solid. Distribution a little poor at times
Neill 6 Weak first half. Never got close to the Wigan winger. Maybe back too soon?
McCartney 7 Some great runs going forward
Noble 9 Simply outstanding. Has put the Man City holiday behind him.
Mullins 7 Sublime pass in the first half was the pass of the game.
Etherington 9 Definitely back to his rampaging best
Dyer 8 He’s fast. Lack of final pass lets him down, but a great home debut
Zamora 6 A very average performance from Bobby
Bellamy 8 He’s fast too. Very committed. Loves a hard tackle. Subbed with a groin strain

Bowyer 7 Let’s hope his first goal leads to many more
Ashton 8 Made a real difference with his height and physical presence
Boa Morte 7 Several nice touches towards the end

Alan Curbishley 7 marked down for not playing Ashton from the start. Could have cost us three points.

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22 Responses to Wigan: Match Report

  1. Connor says:

    Lol you hate LBM so much.. He was outstanding when he came on, i thought he was going to score. Set up bowyer too. Bout fukn time Bowyer did something

  2. Rooster says:

    Given time the team will gel and play better, Players are missing goals they would usualy score due to pressure at getting picked for the squad

  3. DaDon says:

    Sorry but the words ‘outstanding’ and ‘Etherington’ don’t belong in the same sentence. He’s a brainless lightweight, gives the ball away stupidly all the time and goes awol on a regular basis. Today he was largely anonymous (again) so to give him a 9 is ludicrous. No one was worth more than a 7 today although the speed of Dyer and Bellamy and the power and touch of Ashton were encouraging.

  4. manic hammer says:

    agree with roost that as time passes team will gel more , especially with parker and ljungberg coming back. we re creating chances ,an di wud agree that for the first half at least ,we certainly bossed it. we simply need to start doing more with all the chnaves we create, which will happen as ashton gets fitter and plays more. to me the one negative was that our clearances at times were tentative and put us under pressure. a minor critiicism is that when we have men in the box, at times they stand like robots and don t move, making it too easy to mark them. i thought boa morte chnaged the game. he simply outplayed all the wigan defenders when he came on- maybe he s best as a 30 minute player now.

    i think the resilience shown in getting the gal back with only about 15 minutes left to do it was brilliant, and will provide a confidence boost to the team . i felt that neill was better than the editor credits him for , although i agree that koumas did trouble him a bit. i thought mccartney was unlucky not to score as he had 2 good shots on goal – i hope thi sperformance might silence a few of his crtitics. i was less pleased with ferdinand and upson, who i thought played ok, but not great. etherington did well enough so that it s not going to be esy to keep him out of the side even once all our midfielders are fit. It was unfortunate that zamora didn t get off the mark-the guy gives everything but it wasn t his day. he s going to need to cut down on the number of offisides and fouls he commits ,though i still think he s been the victim of poor officiating. defenders foul him all game long and the refs don t award the free kicks. all in all , at this stage of the season, i ll take the point, and view it as a point earned ,not 2 points dropped, even tho i felt we were the better side, it s a step in the right direction, and at this stage every point helps in tems of confidence and getting off to a resonable start

  5. BAC says:

    There were some positives, but the lack of a cutting edge in front of goal is worrying. Hopefully, it’ll start coming together soon.

  6. David says:

    Sorry Iain. I think you 1) have either been in politics too long or 2) you’ve got your rose tinted spectacles on. We were crap and I couldn’t see for one minute where our goal was gonna come from, at least until Deano and surprisingly, Boa came on. Dyer and Bellamy terrorised no one except the pigeons down the corner flag although Z man nearly hit one on the roof of the Bobby Moore stand! Matty and Georgie would ping down the wing as far as the halfway line, pass it among themselves then pass it back to Anton who would then pass it back to Green. Neill run all over the place winning the ball and then obligingly give it back or pass to the boys who were chasing the corner flag pigeons………oh mate it was awwwwwwwful. AND this is only our third GAME?

  7. Aylesbury Hammer says:

    Rooster, your logic suggests that they’re scared! I dunno the answer, but I flippin hope they aint scared of Curbs’s selection methodology. Ideas?

  8. Hammerithome says:

    Good report Ian;
    I thought we were a little poor on our crosses though,and kept wondering why we looked weak in that area,although I would not blame it all on Ethers who did have a fair game. I do get a bit critical over crosses, as I used to be a winger who was praised for my crossing ability.
    I think there is not a lot wrong with our team and it’s only a matter of time before we clatter someone.

  9. Rooster says:

    Well said hammerithome, My thoughts precisley.

  10. Hammerithome says:

    I think what David says is partly right,but if you look at the stats Wigan only had 32% of possesion,and they did only come for a draw,so it was not all down to us playing rubbish.
    You can’t always play well against a team intent on being negative I’m afraid,and for that reason I think we done ok. We will get better.

  11. Hammerithome says:

    Just said on Sky Sports that the Bristol v Hammers game is on Sky Tuesday.

  12. Brooking knows best says:

    Didn’t get to the game, rah! but on sky sports, chris Kamara was saying how dull it all was until wigan scored. Judging by the reports here, he was watching a different game?
    My worry is that we are going to pin all our hopes on Ashton getting the goals, He is quality but i fell we need a goal poacher. Poor bobby Zamora loooks like he has lost his touch and does at the moment also look out of his depth. Bellamy will always score 10 to 15 goals a season. Calton Cole is a waste os space.
    We do need another striker!

  13. ny hammer says:

    there were periods where we were backpassing to the keeper, but despite that , we DID create a number of chances, and could and SHOULD have had a couple goals. to say we were poor is absolutely moronic. we weren t great , but we certainly weren t poor , and were a darn sight better than the first home match. not too mention this without parker and ljungberg , and without a fully fit ashton.

    as for a striker, until and unless we get another striker, which is looking unlikely now until janauary, get used to seeing a bit more of dyer up front. i d like to see zamora keep playing, but he obviously needs to do better to justify being picked ,otherwise it will be a less than 100 pct dean ashton, or dyer for the month of september, i can t see ashton being really back to form before october.

    we need to be a bit more positive though , and not so quick to castigate team or individual performances. yes, we need to improve, and quickly , but we also do NOT need useless negativity after 3 games either.

    up the hammers. yih..

  14. Rapidhammer says:

    Thank you, Iain, for this encouring match report!
    However ManU has escaped from the drop zone. And it was a Carlos Tévez assist again!

  15. NunheadHammer says:

    Thanks for the upbeat report. I didn’t see the game but heard that Curbs had said, in response to fans calls for Ashton to be reinstated to the starting XI, that he was not ready yet. I also think that Etherington deserves more praise as he seems to have recaptured something of his past form – more positives like this…

  16. ny hammer says:

    how the might have fallen. scrape by 1-0 at home against spuds, who have won 1 match in 4.
    sheer class. and don t cry off telling me they have no rooney or ronaldo. poor baby ferguson.
    ill mannered ,arrogant twit

  17. Rooster says:

    Re Brooking knows best.

    I noticed that on Chris Kamara on Saturday, he looked well spaced out, His commentating on the match was like short and boring to what he usualy does.
    I Read something he said about the hammers on Sky Sports web site this morning and send him a fact finding email.
    The whole email i sent is on my blog. Still waiting for his comments on it.

  18. ny hammer says:

    re kamara

    the game was anything but dull. there were plenty of chnaces at both ends and cud have easily been 2-2 ,3-3 etc. the only time it got dull were the occassional periods when wigan pressured us into making backpasses to the keeper- . thankfully that didn t go on for too long,altho it was irritating when it happened.

  19. killer of spuds says:

    fottenham a big club? what a load of tosh.

    man city cud be manure ,yet the mighty north london, loudmouthed ,50 illion quid spending,underachieving,arrogant boring timewasters who spent all july giving it the big one on other clubs blogs can t even score a goal against an injury ridden manure.

    usual rules. all lip. no results . gazzy vinegar and his crisp eating bunch of obesity promoting, crumbsucking non-organic pigs

  20. Brooking knows best says:

    Funny, I remember now listening to Chris Kamara on 5-LIve a couple of seasons ago when we was playing Sheffield Utd in the cup. He was actualy willing sheffield to score. He was like a frustrated fan. I had never heard before a commentator say they really hope a team wins when on a nuetral BBC. He also cheered when they won. rah! I never liked Kamara before but now I know he’s a twat!

  21. Rooster says:

    Killer of spuds, was yu pissed when yu wrote yur comment? lol
    Brooking knows best, yur right bruv, i reckon he is a sheff u supporter on the quiet.. and i still havent had an email back from the dweeb yet. ill let yu guys know when i do, ill post it on my Blog http://ironworker.wordpress.com/ and on West Ham till i die too.
    Hope we slaughter the Rovers tonite.. 4-0 yeh!!!

  22. killer of spuds says:

    stone cold sober mate- just that spuds have already won the award for most obnoxious set of supporters award for 2007-2008 , before the season even started ,by virtue of their numbnut antics earlier in the summer when the rumours were around that we mite buy defoe.

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