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May 14, 2013
• Emirates Stadium, London
Referee: M. Dean
• Attendance: 60068
L. Podolski 11', 68'
T. Walcott 63'
A. Ramsey 71'
S. Maloney 45'
So a big night for both teams. Wigan bow out of the Premier League, while Arsenal put Champions League qualification in their own hands as they travel to Newcastle on the last day.
The Wigan fans are applauding the players, some of whom are looking very sad indeed. Goalkeeper Joel has been crouching since the final whistle with his head in his hands. The Latics players head over to applaud the travelling supporters.
90' + 3'
FULL TIME! Wigan are relegated.
90' + 1'
Mikel Amatrian Arteta
90' + 1'
Into the second of two minutes' added time...
Arsenal launch a scintillating counterattack, but Walcott's cross towards Cazorla is blocked by Scharner.
Wigan are still going looking for a goal, and trying to push, but the Gunners are holding firm at the back.
The corner is eventually cleared, but Arsenal win possession back and continue to keep the ball without too much pressure.
Oxlade-Chamberlain attempts to dart past Di Santo, and wins a corner for the hosts.
Di Santo unleashes an effort from range, but it skims wide of Szczesny's post. The intensity is well and truly gone from this game, and it has a bit of a testimonial feel as we enter the final 10 minutes.
Wigan try again but McCarthy stumbles before knocking the ball in Watson's direction, but Wigan's FA Cup winner cannot control it.
Wigan trying to find something in the way of attacks, but they're pretty much done for.
It's all ending rather bleakly for Wigan. From FA Cup winners to relegation in three days.
Ewan Roberts, in quick succession: "Stick a fork in Wigan, they're done. 'Are you watching Tottenham?' chant the home fans."
Assist Santi Cazorla
Goal Aaron Ramsey
GOAL! Capitulation. Wigan are heading to the Championship, while Arsenal will have Champions League qualification in their own hands. Aaron Ramsey is played onside down the left. He continues all the way into the box. He shapes to pass across the box and fires past Joel at the near post.
Ewan Roberts, reporting on the Latics' demise: "Goodbye Wigan, it's been nice knowing you. Arsenal extend the lead with a very un-Arsenal goal, as a long ball forward isn't defended well by the Latics and, with Paul Scharner several metres behind the rest of the defence, Lukas Podolski is able to burst through and dink the ball over Joel Robles. Not even Arsenal can throw this away, surely?"
Assist Santi Cazorla
Goal Lukas Podolski
GOAL! And that looks to be that. Some more poor defending. Scharner is playing Podolski onside by a good five yards ahead of his team-mates. Cazorla plays the striker through and he lobs an effort over Joel.
A lot of glum-looking faces in the Wigan crowd now. Kone goes forward and advances into the Arsenal box, but he has no support and is eventually crowded out. The Latics need two goals in the next 25 minutes to stay in the Premier League.
Ewan Roberts at the Emirates Stadium: "The gap between Roger Espinoza and Paul Scharner has been ruthlessly exposed time after time after time. On this occassion, it's Santi Cazorla who darts into the space behind the Honduran before playing a perfect cross for Theo Walcott to bundle into the back of the net. The home crowd are making a bit of a racket now."
Assist Santi Cazorla
Goal Theo Walcott
GOAL! Arsenal counter down the right through Cazorla, and his cross finds Walcott in the centre. The England international is brave and gets a touch ahead of Joel, as it goes agonisingly slowly across the line with Boyce unable to clear.
The noise levels have really escalated in the past few minutes at the Emirates Stadium, with Arsenal going back on the attack. Wigan are in a bit of a disarray after that substitution, but are looking strong when they move forward.
Wigan come close! Maloney swings a free kick in from wide on the right and Boyce gets a header on it but he can't get his effort on target as it loops wide of the far post.
Franco Di Santo
Di Santo is on, and it looks like McManaman is leaving on a stretcher. A sad end to the day for the youngster who was named in England's Under-21 squad for their European Championship this summer.
Yellow Card Shaun Maloney
Callum McManaman is down receiving some treatment, and it looks as if he will be going off for Franco Di Santo.
Mike Dean really incurring the wrath of Arsenal fans here after he gives a free kick for a challenge by Podolski on Boyce, but that looked a foul to me.
Arsenal get forward again. The ball falls to Ramsey on the bounce, but he can't get himself in a position to naturally hit a shot and it balloons over the bar.
Yellow Card A. Alcáraz
Arsenal counter and come close! Walcott finds Cazorla in the box but his effort is tame. Joel pushes it away but it falls to Rosicky, who drags his shot wide. What a start to the second half!
Wigan have the ball in the net, but it is ruled out for offside. Some poor defending from the Gunners allows Wigan in behind. A shot is blocked and falls to McCarthy, but he is offside as he finds the back of the net.
Maloney gets some space near the Arsenal box, but skies his effort. Could have done a bit better there.
Good stop by Szczesny! Wigan play some lovely football in around the area with Kone and McManaman, with the winger going down under a challenge. The ball breaks back to Kone who gets in a low effort, but Szczesny blocks the effort.
The Gunners find Walcott in a similar position to where he scored so early against QPR. He's given offside, but Emmerson Boyce was playing him on. Wigan get slightly lucky there, but they did have numbers back around him.
Wigan get the second half going.
The teams are out and we're about to get underway for the second half.
Ewan Roberts, at the Emirates Stadium: "Shaun Maloney does it again. The Scottish playmaker darts forward and is brought down by Mikel Arteta on the edge of the box. He doesn't let Jordi Gomez take this free kick, though, and sends it flying into the bottom corner via the fingertips of Wojciech Szczesny, who might have got down a little better. The Arsenal crowd are very nervy now, and boo Mike Dean as he leaves the pitch - they don't think that was a free kick."
45' + 1'
Half-time, and what a moment that could prove to be for Wigan. They need a win to stay up, and that could prove to be a precious goal as we head into the break.
Goal Shaun Maloney
WHAT A GOAL! Shaun Maloney equalises from a brilliantly hit free kick! It's slightly controversial as he went down under a very similar challenge to the one Cazorla received no free kick from. The effort zips just over the head of Podolski, who could probably have made a better effort in the wall, and gives Szczesny little chance of keeping it out.
Arsenal not happy with referee Mike Dean. Cazorla goes down very easily under a challenge from McCarthy and no free kick is given, with Arsene Wenger (sodden on the touchline) throwing his arms in the air. It comes to nothing, though.
Getting close to half-time now, and after Szczesny claims a looping ball, he looks to get an attack started just a little too quickly, with his throw zipping out of play.
Very nearly a second for Arsenal. Another corner is just drifted in and it hits Koscielny on the shins before bouncing wide. The Gunners then have the ball in the net after Cazorla plays Walcott in, but the winger is offside. Nice effort though, clipping the ball over Joel.
Maloney cuts in dangerously from the left, but Sagna does well to hold him up, and the winger cannot really get enough purchase on his shot before it is blocked.
Wigan and McManaman get in behind for the first real time, but Koscielny blocks the cross and the Gunners clear. There was palpably a little bit of fear creeping into the Gunners fans, though.
A Wigan man is felled, and takes a quick free kick. It is shifted to Arouna Kone, who goes for a long shot but blazes it a long way over.
That brief break has taken a bit of the intensity out of the game, but Koscielny goes rampaging forward before getting into the box - Wigan clear Cazorla's cross, though.
A few players falling foul of the conditions at the moment, with a couple of slips occurring. Mikel Arteta is briefly on the floor holding his neck, but seems fine to continue.
Wigan just starting to frustrate their opponents now, forcing Ramsey into a shot from way out that skims well wide.
Wigan have a free kick in an inviting area, but rather than specialist Shaun Maloney stepping up, it is Jordi Gomez and his effort is low into the wall.
Koscielny to the rescue! A lofted ball in over the top puts Szczesny and Kone on course for a collision, but the defender acrobatically clears the ball. Real danger there for the Gunners.
Wigan getting a little bit more territory now, but not threatening the Arsenal goal.
Here's Ewan Roberts at the Emirates Stadium: "The frailities of a three at the back formation are being ruthlessly exposed at the Emirates. Theo Walcott is playing high up the pitch in the space being left by Roger Espinoza and is tormenting the Wigan defence every time he gets the ball. Paul Scharner is forced to cover for his Honduran team-mate, leaving Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla two-vs-two against Emmerson Boyce and Antolin Alcaraz."
Cazorla looks to find Ramsey at the front post, but the midfielder cannot get a meaningful effort in on goal.
It would probably be fair to call this a siege on the Wigan goal already. A couple of blocked shots in the area and a Podolski header loops over, but Wigan just aren't getting the ball forward.
Close. A loose pass across the pitch drifts to Bacary Sagna, who optimistically looks to shoot from distance. His effort almost finds its way into the path of Gibbs on the slide, but the left-back just cannot get onto it.
Wigan just looking to calm it down at the moment and keep the ball for a while. That is, until Antolin Alcaraz heads forward and sweeps a pass towards Espinoza, but it drifts out of play for an Arsenal throw.
Theo Walcott is looking dangerous at the moment, and his team-mates are looking to find him at every opportunity. He's really giving Espinoza a tough time, and wins consecutive corners from him.
You've got to say, that defending just isn't good enough if Wigan want to stay in the Premier League. It's good news for Sunderland and Aston Villa fans, bad news for Wigan and Spurs supporters.
Assist Santi Cazorla
Goal Lukas Podolski
GOAL! The softest of goals for the Gunners. A corner is drifted in from the left, and bounces across the six-yard box for an unmarked Lukas Podolski to head in.
Not quite happening for either team yet. A couple of slack passes from Wigan, and Arsenal are unsurprisingly looking a bit sharper.
Arsenal counter, and the cross from the right bounces before Santi Cazorla gets his head on the ball, directing it just past Joel's left-hand post, with the keeper beaten. Close.
The first real sighting of Saturday's FA Cup final man of the match Callum McManaman, who goes past Kieran Gibbs on the right, but his cross is deflected and cleared.
Wigan are now getting some time on the ball, with Shaun Maloney attempting to dictate play. A long diagonal to James McArthur on the right is just too long, and Arsenal have it back.
Arsenal pressing a bit now. Paul Scharner and Roger Espinoza manage to get a ball away under pressure in the area but only for a throw.
Arsenal dominating possession so far, as you would expect. A lot of empty seats at the ground, though, considering the Gunners are going for a Champions League place.
And we're off!
The teams are out going through the pre-match handshakes, and the Gunners have acknowledged Wigan's FA Cup win on Saturday with a sign on the big screens.
Here's an update from Goal.com's man at the ground, Ewan Roberts: "Two teams will take to the pitch at the Emirates, but many more will be watching. Arsenal can do a number of teams a favour by beating Wigan, and thus sending them down, while Tottenham fans will have a curious sense of deja vu. This time last year they were willing Bayern Munich to beat Chelsea to ensure Champions League qualification, this year they are looking for Wigan to do them a favour."
Wigan: Robles; Boyce, Alcaraz, Scharner; McArthur, McCarthy, Gomez, Espinoza; McManaman, Kone, Maloney. Subs: Al Habsi, Caldwell, Watson, Di Santo, Henriquez, Fyvie, Golobart
Arsenal: Szczesny; Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs; Rosicky, Arteta, Ramsey; Cazorla, Walcott, Podolski. Subs: Fabianski, Vermaelen, Jenkinson, Monreal, Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Gervinho.
Good evening, and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of Arsenal v Wigan at the Emirates Stadium! A huge encounter for both sides, for very different reasons. Here comes the team news...
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