Football Season Guide

Wigan Athletic


Ivan Ramis (defender)(Mallorca) ; Fraser Fyvie (midfielder)(Aberdeen):ryo Miyaichi (sp)(att)(Loan from Arsenal)


Hugo Rodallega (forward)(Fulham); Mohamed Diame (midfielder)(West Ham); Simon Cox (midfielder)(Nottingham Forrest): Hendry Thomas (midfielder)(released)

Wigan have once again survived last season for an eighth consecutive time in the top flight. The Latics looked doomed at one stage in the wake of a dreadful winless run round the turn of the year but a fantastic series of results in the final couple of months of the campaign propelled them past the safety line. Roberto Martinez returns at the helm this summer, probably hoping for a more consistent season this time round. The Spaniard will rely on the same core of players that did so well in the last stages of the past season, with the excellent Ali Habsi back in goal and a solid defensive unit formed by central defenders Gary Caldwell and Antolin Alcaraz and full backs Emerson Boyce and Maynor Figueroa. The defence improved throughout last season and should remain the same at least at the start of the campaign, although summer recruit Ivan Ramis from Mallorca will logically look to claim a starting spot in the centre. Midfielder Fraser Fyvie is also in from Aberdeen. One feels more signings will be needed to ensure Wigan are able to compete once again this season. With Mohamed Diame moving to West Ham in the summer, the Latics will need to beef up their midfield, although McCarthy and McArthur formed a good central unit last season. Roberto Martinez will obviously be on the lookout for reinforcement in the attack, which was a problem last season till Easter. Besides, Hugo Rodallega has now departed for Fulham, and Victor Moses is eagerly followed by suitors, which could leave Wigan with only the on-and-off Franco Di Santo and Mauro Boselli, who is back atthe club after two loan spells, in the attack. Shaun Maloney should return in the playmaker role, along with the likes of Jordi Gomes and Ben Watson, who will hope to return in contention after being dropped in the second half of last season.


Absent some serious reinforcement in midfield and upfront, it is difficult not to expect Wigan to struggle again at some stage this season, although they have accostumed us to doing wonders to escape relegation season in, season out for the past 8 years now.