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Premier League

  • 22 September 2012
  • • 15:00
  • • The DW Stadium, Wigan
  • Referee: L. Probert
  • • Attendance: 19284
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Wigan - Fulham Preview: Latics aim to record their first win in 12 attempts over Martin Jol's side

Wigan - Fulham Preview: Latics aim to record their first win in 12 attempts over Martin Jol's side

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The west London outfit are looking to build on their 3-0 win over West Brom last weekend and face a home side short on confidence after a drubbing at Manchester United

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

WIGAN

Al-Habsi
Caldwell, Boyce, Ramis, Figueroa
McCarthy, Maloney, McArthur, Beausejour
Kone, Di Santo
FULHAM
 
Schwarzer
Riise, Hangeland, Baird, Hughes
Riether, Sidwell, Duff, Kacaniklic
Berbatov, Rodallega

There are no fresh injury worries for Roberto Martinez following the club’s 4-0 defeat against Manchester United last Saturday.

Antolin Alcaraz should make his comeback from a hip injury, but may have to settle for a place on the bench, due to the form of summer signing, Ivan Ramis.

Saturday’s match could very well be a case of, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ for Martin Jol as he is set to name an unchanged team from the 3-0 defeat of West Brom.

The match could come too soon for the returns of Bryan Ruiz and Phillippe Senderos, but new midfield signing Giorgos Karagounis is pushing for a start.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Wigan’s recent home form could help them to defy their dismal record against Fulham – Roberto Martinez’s men have lost just one of their last seven Premier League home games.
  • Expect a penalty on Saturday – Wigan have conceded more spot-kicks than any other Premier League side in 2012 with 11 so far.
  • However, scoring may be a problem for the Latics on Saturday – they have only netted eight times in 14 games against Fulham and never more than once in any of those matches.
  • The game sees Hugo Rodallega make his return to the DW Stadium – the Fulham summer signing scored 23 goals in 112 appearances for Wigan.
  • Fulham are the epitome of a ‘bogey team’ for Wigan – the Latics have not beaten the Cottagers in their last 11 games between the two.
  • Do not expect a draw on Saturday - Fulham have not drawn a Premier League away game in 2012, winning three and losing eight.
  • Ali Al-Habsi (pictured right) may be a busy goalkeeper on Saturday - Fulham have had more shots on target than any other team in the Premier League, with 34.
  • Fulham have only conceded six goals this season, all of which have come before half-time.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
26Ali Al HabsiGoalkeeper
5Gary CaldwellDefender
17Emmerson BoyceDefender
21Iván RamisDefender
3Maynor FigueroaDefender
16James McCarthyMidfielder
8Ben WatsonMidfielder
15Jordi GómezMidfielder
11Jean BeausejourMidfielder
9Arouna KoneStriker
10Shaun MaloneyStriker
12Mike PollittGoalkeeper
19David JonesMidfielder
8Albert CrusatMidfielder
16James McArthurMidfielder
31Ryo MiyaichiStriker
15Callum McManamanStriker
-Mauro BoselliStriker
23Mark SchwarzerGoalkeeper
3John Arne RiiseDefender
5Brede HangelandDefender
6Chris BairdDefender
18Aaron HughesDefender
20Sascha RietherMidfielder
4Steve SidwellMidfielder
16Damien DuffMidfielder
11Alexander KacaniklicMidfielder
9Dimitar BerbatovStriker
20Hugo RodallegaStriker
-David StockdaleGoalkeeper
2Stephen KellyDefender
17Matthew BriggsDefender
10Pajtim KasamiMidfielder
14Georgios KaragounisMidfielder
10Mladen PetricStriker
11Bryan RuizStriker
Players to Watch
Franco Di Santo
Franco Di Santo
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Franco Di Santo had a sticky start to his Wigan career. Often deployed as a lone target man, the Argentine’s goal return was anything but that expected of a Premier League striker, scoring a solitary goal in 25 league appearances in the 2010/11 campaign.

Last season saw the 23-year-old begin to hit his straps, increasing his goal tally to seven and also coming up with some vital assists to keep Hugo Rodellega out of the starting line-up.

Di Santo has already netted twice this season, opening the scoring in the campaign’s curtain raising 2-0 defeat of Southampton and Wigan fans will be looking for more of the same on Saturday.
Dimitar Berbatov
Dimitar Berbatov
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
Dimitar Berbatov represents one of the club’s greatest signings and at a fee rumoured to be around £2 million, the Bulgarian came at a snip in the current transfer market.

The former Tottenham and Manchester United striker is a mercurial talent, as adept as a support striker as he is in the target man role and has provided goals and assists at every club he has played for.

And he has continued that trend at Fulham, opening his account on his home debut with a pair of strikes in the recent 3-0 win over West Brom.

The Latics’ defence will have to be on top form to stop a Bulgarian with a point to prove.
Prediction
Fulham are two points ahead of Saturday’s opponents in the league and after their impressive 3-0 win against West Brom last week, are a team riding high on confidence.

With Wigan failing to beat the London side in their last 11 league encounters and a draw an unlikely result with Fulham around in 2012, expect the away team to come away with a narrow victory from the DW Stadium.

Throw into that the influence of Dimitar Berbatov and Wigan are certainly facing an uphill challenge to get anything out of Saturday’s clash.
Editor's Prediction
Wigan 0
Fulham 2

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