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September 24, 2011
• The DW Stadium, Wigan
Referee: J. Moss
• Attendance: 18788
90' + 5'
And that's it! The referee blows for full time. Wigan huffed and puffed in a vastly improved second half performance but Spurs held on for their third win in a row which sends them to sixth in the table, with Wigan falling to 15th.
90' + 4'
Wigan play it short and out wide to McCarthy to have a dig across goal but King charges out and blocks the shot with Kaboul completing the clearance.
90' + 3'
Yellow Card Emmanuel Adebayor
90' + 3'
Here we go. Modric fouls Sammon on the edge of the Spurs area. One minute to go. Last chance for Wigan, surely...
90' + 1'
90' + 1'
Spurs, naturally, play keep ball for a few seconds before Parker spots Bale charging down the right. The pass is perfect but Bale's touch is poor and Al Habsi collects.
Just entering stoppage time now of which there will be four minutes.
And McCarthy tries from 40 yards! He spots Friedel off his line and half-volleys a decent effort to beat the American but the ball travels too slow and allows Friedel to get back in time. You never know, one another day that could have gone in.
Such a waste from Wigan. As the home side pounce on slack possession from Spurs, McCarthy flies forward. He holds off a few challenges before trying to slip in Sammon but the pass is all wrong and it rolls out for a goalkick to Spurs.
Modric takes the resulting corner and again Spurs get a free header as Kaboul rises highest but directs the ball across the face of goal and wide.
KABOUL HITS THE BAR! The defender takes the freekick and it flies wickedly off the wall and spins onto Al Habsi's bar with the goalkeeper beaten.
Modric and Sando combine in to centre to free Assou-Ekotto down the left. The left-back decides to deliver a low cross early towards Dos Santos and the Mexican wins a freekick on the edge of the area after being blocked by Caldwell...
Rafael van der Vaart
Giovani dos Santos
Dos Santos getting about the place after coming on, holding off Stam to play in Modric for a low shot on goal. Al Habsi makes an easy low save.
A neat ball from Diame nearly frees Salmon inside the Spurs area but strong defending from Kaboul clears the danger. Giovani Dos Santos is ready to come on for Spurs.
Yellow Card Conor Sammon
Two minutes after coming off the bench Salmon needlessly takes out Parker and finds his name in the referee's book. A lot of that from Wigan today.
15 minutes plus change for Wigan to find an equaliser. Spurs looking the stronger side though.
Franco Di Santo
Corner for Spurs after a fine challenge from Figueroa takes the ball away from Van der Vaart. Modric takes it and Kaboul has a free header but it flies inches over. Cue premature cheers from the away support, but no goal.
Yellow Card James McCarthy
Spurs with better ball retention in midfield since the sending off as Modric and Van der Vaart combine while advancing but the nervy Wigan defence hack it clear.
Very open now. First Spurs come close after a Bale cut-back from the left goes behind Modric. Their is a bit of pinball inside the area before Assou-Ekotto comes from an offside position and is, possibly, fouled inside the area. Either way the referee says 'no penalty'. Wigan go straight up field through Moses and the youngster gets a weak shot on target.
Di Santo goes upfield and wins a corner off Kaboul (who really should have just passed it back to Friedel, but there you go). The striker takes it and looks for Moses at the near post for the forward can only volley it out for a goalkick.
Spurs take the resulting freekick 30 yards out but it comes to nothing as Wigan easily clear.
Yes, Stam has slotted into defence to make a 3-4-2 for Wigan.
Yellow/Red S. Gohouri
Ok, just as I type that things have just got a lot harder for Wigan. Gohouri trips Bale and is shown a second yellow and the red card duly follows. Wigan are down to 10 men and will now surely lose a man in midfield to make way for the loss of the defender.
I may have called Martinez gutsy earlier for going 3-5-2 but they have more than matched Spurs in midfield in the second half. Well done.
Redknapp has a word and Adebayor returns to the field... for the second time. Can we get on with the game now please?
Hold on, Adebayor has gone down again! This time he is rubbing his eye. He leaves the pitch again for treatment.
And yes, Adebayor does return.
Bit of a delay in play here as Figueroa gets a strong but fair challenge in on Adebayor. The former Arsenal man stays down and is taken off the field for treatment. He should be fine though.
Wigan continue to break and make their way all the way up field through Van Aanholt but his cross towards Di Santo at the far post is cut out by Assou-Ekotto.
Time for a breather for Spurs as Modric wins a corner. He takes it and aims for Adebayor but the striker's header is weak and Wigan clear.
A real change in the mood here as Diame powers a cross field ball to find Moses but the youngster cannot get past Walker. The home crowd are full of voice.
Assist Ronnie Stam
Goal Mohamed Diame
GOAL! 2-1! Game on perhaps? Diame gives his side hope as he holds off Kaboul on the edge of the area and shrugs off a half-hearted challenge from Assou-Ekotto to drill a low effort into the far corner past Friedel.
Good play by Bale down the left as he skips past one challenge then cuts inside past another but his blind flick to his right to find Adebayor is cut out by Caldwell.
A quick glimpse at Redknapp shows me the manager making a strange bird impression by flinging his arms out wide and flapping them about. I think he might be saying "attack the flanks", but you never know.
Looking at the formation of Wigan after that substitution, they seem to be going with a back three, with Stam taking a place in midfield. Gutsy for Martinez.
And Wigan get us back underway! Tottenham in total control here as Wigan look to improve dramatically in the second half.
As the substitutes finish their warm ups, the teams come back out. Wigan make a change as Stam comes on for Gomez.
A torrid first half for Wigan as Spurs could have had at least four goals before the break. A big talk needed from manager Martinez. I'll be back in 10 minutes.
45' + 2'
Spurs take their foot off the gas as they see out the first half and the referee duly blows the whistle. Half time!
Two minutes of added time to play as we see the first real sight of Di Santo as he tries to control a long ball, and fails.
Another throw-in for Spurs and Walker takes it again. He tries to find Adebayor but Van Aanholt gets to the ball first and protects the ball as it rolls harmlessly out for a goal kick.
Parker and Sandro are providing a stern test for Wigan in the centre of the park. Even if Wigan manage to get the ball off them they just hoof the ball upfield and Friedel collects.
With Bale now marked heavily, Modric aims for King this time but the captain can only head the ball down into the ground and it bounces harmlessly clear.
Bale finds Adebayor 20 yards out and Togolese striker unleashes a fiery shot to bring a fine save out of Al Habsi. Spurs win the corner...
More fine work by the Spurs midfield as Modric and Van der Vaart combine well to release the latter down the right but again Caldwell gets a vital foot in the break up the play.
Haha, you don't see this too often anymore. Gohouri, who is seeing a lot of the ball, wins a throw in around 25 yards out but his eagerness means he makes a foul-throw and the referee awards Spurs the throw-in. Caldwell looks bemused.
Ouch. Caldwell accidently clatters Van der Vaart with his right arm as the two go up for the same ball. No intention to hurt the Dutchman at all from the defender. Van der Vaart eventually gets up, rubs his head and is fine to carry on.
Gohouri tries to redeem himself for being schooled by the pace of Bale but getting to the right byline but Assou-Ekotto makes an easy tackle and clears.
Dear me, that really should have been 3-0. Bale absolutely flies down the left flank, after being released by Adebayor, and leaves Gohouri in his wake. Modric tries his best to keep up with him for the option of the cut-back but the Welshman, rather selfishly, goes alone and Al Habsi makes a relatively easy save at his near post.
And it's nearly 3-0! Exactly the same as last time. Modric floats the ball in and Bale is again clear to head at goal. This time he heads over. Too easy.
Wigan take a throw-in but Spurs win the ball back straight away and Walker is immediately released yet again down the right, forcing Van Aanholt to win another corner.
Yellow Card S. Gohouri
He's been impressive so far for Wigan but that was just reckless by Gohouri. Bale is scampering through the centre of the pitch and the defender just hacks down the Welshman as he crosses the halfway line. Petty and frustration showing.
Wigan had no players on either post for that corner. That may have helped, to be frank. Either way, Bale won't care as that's his first goal since New Year's Day!
Assist Luka Modric
Goal Gareth Bale
GOAL! 2-0! Gareth Bale with the header! Modric takes the corner and Bale rises highest, around eight yards out to glance the ball past the despairing Al Habsi.
This is more like it. Modric this time sprays a fine pass out to the right for Walker to run onto but the right-back's first touch is too heavy and Caldwell clears for a corner.
Strange freekick "routine" by Spurs there. They win the set-play 40 yards out but decide to play keep ball with it. That is until Modric is tackled by Van Aanholt and Wigan hoof it clear.
Wigan are growing in confidence after a strong start from Spurs and they continue to press the away side, this time through Diame who makes a great run to and along the left byline but Sandro gets a boot in to clear as he approaches the six yard area.
Oof. Possibly should have been 2-0 there. Bale again has space down the left but this time opts for the early, lofted delivery. It evades everyone except youngster Walker but he can only direct his free header wide of the left post. He looked surprised the ball reached him to be fair.
A glimpse of the best of Bale as he sets off, head bowed, down the left flank but Gohouri just about keeps up with him and gets a touch to take the sting out of Bale's attempted low delivery into the area. Wigan clear.
Wigan come straight back at Spurs and it's again through Gomez but this time his delivery is headed clear by King inside the box.
First sight of goal for Wigan and they nearly take full advantage. Sandro concedes a freekick 25 yards out after fouling Moses. Gomez takes the reins and whips a fine delivery into the six-yard box that Friedel can only punch clear.
Walker wins a throw-in after good work down the right flank. The England right-back takes it and aims for Adebayor but Van Aanholt tackles well and clears.
For the first time this game Wigan keep their foot on the ball and play it back to their goalkeeper. Unfortunately Al Habsi's clearance is poor and Parker picks it up in central midfield and tries to play in Van der Vaart only for Gohouri to intercept and clear.
Here comes Adebayor again but this time Caldwell gets the better of him and clears. Wave after wave of Spurs attack here.
Ok, I might be getting ahead of myself but it is all Spurs here as first Bale tries his luck with a mazey run down the left before Walker takes a less selfish route and plays in Adebayor to blaze over from the edge of the area. The striker should have at least got that on target. He has acres of space to control the ball first.
I surely can't be the only one immediately remembering a certain 9-1 thrashing two years ago....
Assist Emmanuel Adebayor
Goal Rafael van der Vaart
GOAL! Van der Vaart with his first of the season! Latics left-back Figueroa has a 'mare as his poor concentration allows Adebayor to skip into the ball, hold it up outside the area and slip a great ball through to the onrushing Dutchman to power home inside the area.
And Spurs get us underway! The away side go straight on the attack as Walker storms down the right and delivers a perfect ball for Adebayor but the tall striker cannot get the ball under control after pressure from Caldwell.
And with that we are seconds away from kick-off....
Latics striker Hugo Rodellega misses the visit of the north London team after coming off injured against Everton last week but his replacement Franco Di Santo already has three [deflected] goals to his name this season. For Spurs, Defoe misses out and is replaced by Rafael Van der Vaart as they take shape in a 4-5-1 formation. Sandro makes his first Premier League start of the season and Assou-Ekotto shakes of a nasty cold to keep his place at left-back.
So Wigan come into this game on the back of a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Everton last weekend, whereas Spurs were rampant in a 4-0 victory over Liverpool.
Tottenham: Friedel; Walker, Kaboul, King, Assou-Ekotto; Modric, Parker, Sandro, Bale; Van der Vaart; Adebayor. Subs: Cudicini, Giovani, Bassong, Corluka, Livermore, Townsend, Carroll.
Wigan: Al Habsi; Gohouri, Caldwell, Figueroa, Van Aanholt; Diame, Watson, McCarthy, Moses; Di Santo, Gomez. Subs: Kirkland, Crusat, Maloney, McArthur, Sammon, Jones, Stam.
Let's get the formalities out of the way. Here come the line-ups...
Good afternoon and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of the Premier League clash between Wigan Athletic and Tottenham Hotspur.
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