Top ten facts and stats to know about Wigan Athletic.

Posted on October 15th, 2010 | 47 Comments |

A warm welcome to Wigan FC.
A warm welcome to Wigan FC.
It’s a welcome return to the Premier League this weekend following England’s dismal display against Montenegro, and with the return to club football comes the return of the Top Ten’s of United’s next opposition. This time it’s Wigan Athletic.

United head into the game looking to find some home form following frustrating defeats to Blackpool and Stoke City. If Chris Hughton reads these important facts it might give him the tactical edge over Mr Martinez in the Wigan dug out. You never know eh?

1. There isn’t much of a history between the two sides, with only 11 meetings between the two clubs, nine of which have been since Wigan’s promotion to the Premier League in 2005. And its The Latics who hold the better head-to-head record with five wins compared our four. Newcastle fans can, hopefully, take confidence from the fact that Wigan have yet to record a victory at Newcastle with United winning three and drawing two of the matches at St James’ Park.

2. United first met Wigan on January 9th 1954 in the 3rd round of the FA Cup. United drew 2-2 that day at St James’ Park with goals from Ivar Broadis and Jackie Milburn saving United’s blushes against a side then in the Lacashire Combination League. The draw meant United faced a replay at Springfield Park and in another close game the Geordies needed goals from Broadis again and Len White to secure their first and so far only win in Wigan with a 3-2 victory infront of  26 500, a crowd the current Lactics could only dream of.

3. The first modern day meeting between the two sides saw Graeme Souness take his Newcastle side to the JJB for a 12.45pm kick-off on October 15th 2005. Newcastle fell to a 1-0 defeat to the Premier League newboys in front of the nation as the game was shown live on Sky Sports.

The Newcastle squad that day included only three current players – Steve Harper, Shola Ameobi and Steven Taylor, with the first an unused sub, the second a 37th minute sub for Lee Bowyer and the latter starting. A young Ryan Taylor was also among the second-half subs for the home side.

4. Ryan Taylor is of course one of just a handful of players to have played for both the black and white stripes of Newcastle and blue and white stripes of Wigan. Other notable names however include of course Charles Insomnia – sorry N’Zogbia, and cult forward Antoine Sibierski along with former Latics captain turned mackem rock Titus Bramble, who was named player of the year at Wigan in 2009. Chuckles (N’zogbia) picked up the award in 2010.

United could line up against a pair of former Newcastle players in the shape of Caldwell borthers Gary and Steven. Scotland’s answer to the Neville’s never really hit it off at St James’ Park and were soon sent packing.

5. I have decided that since so much attention has been given to the Zog’s first return to Tyneside since leaving he deserves his own point. N’Zogbia left United’s sinking ship for the calmer waters of Wigan Athletic in January 2009 after endless claims of wanting to play for a bigger club, the question is, is he now?

Wigan’s average attendace is 15,208 compared to United’s 45,019. United honours include being four-time league champions, six time FA Cup winners, Fairs Cup winners and the big one, the Intertoto Cup. The Lactics honours include reaching the 6th round of the FA Cup in 1986/87 and the League Cup final in 2006 (losing 4-0 to Manchester United) along with being Championship and Divison 2 runners up. Clear to see that N’Zogbia made the right move isn’t it?

6. Now the rant is out of the way, Wigan currently sit 14th in the table after a puzzling start to the season that has seen them lose 4-0 at home to Blackpool on the opening day before being hit for six against Chelsea at the DW. Then they went and beat Tottenham 1-0 at White Hart Lane. Go figure.

Roberto Martinez is in his second season at the DW after replacing Stadium of Light bound Geordie Steve Bruce in the summer of 2009. Finishing his first season with 9 wins from 38 games and a points tally of just 36, Roberto’s side still finished 16th.

Wigan’s record of conceding 79 goals and having goal difference of -42 was the worst record ever for a side who stayed in the Premier League. Heavy 9-1 and 8-0 defeats to Spurs and Chelsea didn’t help mind. His current record stands at played 51, won 14, drawn 12 and lost 25 leaving him with a win percentage of 27.45% compared to Chris Hughton’s 60% heading into his 61st game.

7. The club record signing for the DW side is Mauro Boselli who cost £6.5m, but despite some good performances the striker is yet to net in his four appearances so far this season. Hugo Rodallega is the clubs leading scorer with 2 goals this season.

Current form between the two sides isn’t to different with both sides recording just two wins. Wigan however have managed only four goals compared to United’s ten and have conceded 13 goals compared to United’s ten. Wigan goalkeeper Ali-Al Habsi tops the opta chart performance ratings for the club with 7.41 whilst former United target Tom Cleverley is second with 7.00. Joey Barton and Andy Carroll are joint top of the United stats with ratings of 7.09 this season.

8. The last meeting between the two sides was on boxing day 2009 as Wigan visited St James’ Park, and it was typically an ex-mag who levelled the scores with a 90th minute equaliser as the sides drew 2-2. Soon-to-be-mag Ryan Taylor had put The Latics into a 3rd minute lead which Steve Bruce’s men held onto until the Michael Owen’s 80th minute leveller. Obafemi Martins looked to have sealed the win in 87th minute only for Titus Bramble to level the scores.

Steve Bruce described Bramble as ‘outstanding’ as he became the 17th former magpie to net against United in the Premier League and Ryan Taylor became the 16th future mag to net against us. Quiz time again – how many of the 17 former and 16 future mags can you name?

9. United head into the game looking to end a run of nine Saturday kick-offs in the Premier League without victory. Newcastle will be looking to notch up their 250th Premership victory.

The stats of the Premier League are in United’s favour however. After 70 games played this season there have been 29 home wins (41.43%) and 16 away wins (22.86%) with 25 draws (35.71%).

10. Finally the Ladbrokes match odds. United are priced at 4/5 to win with the visitors priced 7/2 and a draw 5/2. The most common result between the two sides in recent years has been 1-0 and the chances of that again tomorrow are priced at 6/1 for United and 8/1 for Wigan.

Howay the lads!

NUFCBlog Author: Paul Reece Paul Reece has written 14 articles on this blog.

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47 Responses

  1. no plas act against wigan..go for pissing about for 60 mintues if we are still drawing …ranger must be playing or on the bench..or first 1 on for who ever..what does he need to get a game..he is are only player who looks to get in the box and looking to get on the end of things to score…if he isnt on the bench again just to fill it with his pals then..sorry ch u need to move over and let some1 else manage newcastle…not having a go ch ..just stating the fact we need goals..he is playing for reserves and banging in the he is doing his bit..but he wont even get on the bench..i would be pissed is not about attiude..

  2. Seriouly though why is Nolan so undroppable. We have played 7 prem games now and Nolan has scored 3 goals, sounds ok, but not when you consider that one was a penalty and the others were basically tap-in’s. Other than if it is on a plate he just doesn’t look like scoring imo. How long have we gotta go before CH changes this stupid ‘1 in the hole’ formation 10 games, 15 games? Give Ranger his chance please and stop hiding behind the fact that Nolan is a more senior player, he is too slow and frankly average for the prem these days.

  3. why not play ranger on the wing against wigan..thats were he plays him…when in the first team..not to upset the seniors who he cant drop..just says a lot about ch..putting him upfront b4 them says he is afraid to do that..

  4. if he plays nolan in midfield on saturday and drops barton or tiote..then i will say it is over for ch..give it 1 month then i will be calling for his head..

  5. if he comes up that crap..he offers goals..then he should not be manager if it all goes wrong against wigan..

  6. While I agree that I’d like to see a more all-out attack tomorrow, I can’t go along with either the Ranger thing or the ridiculous call for CH’s head. You’re kidding on that 2nd one, right?

    CH sees every player training every day. He sees every match, every reserves game, every practice match. He watches each one a squillion times to assess players. He does the same with opposition games.

    But based on probably less than 100 minutes of footage of Ranger you think you know better?

    He’s a kid. A talented kid, but one who has been shown up as not ready more than once recently. I’d like to see him come on at some point, but he’s no panacea.

  7. I do agree that Nolan’s just not been effective recently. Thought we looked much better with Shola and Andy C up there. Ranger on the right worked well against Chelski too, and he did get into the box a lot.

    Is it too early for Guthrie? Not sure how to get him and Barton on the pitch at the same time, as neither can go out wide. Barton’s work rate is excellent, but his passing can be awful.

    Tricky one, this. Nice to have options, though :)

  8. Ranger is not a winger, he had a face like a guy trying to push a piano up a flight of stairs in the accrigton game. He is not cut out for endlessly running up and down the wing. He is a cente forward who has bursts of pace and hold up play and then a rest in between. It is pointless playing him on the wing.

  9. Whumpie – Three minute after your first comment you are asking where everyone is? Give em a chance bonny lad FFS! It’s Friday aswell, and I have long had a feeling that Friday is quiet day on here…

  10. DJG – true, he’s best in the middle, but so are so many other players. I thought he looked ok out there, but it’s based on limited time and some dodgy vid streams!

    Praps best to just have him as a supersub 2nd striker.

    CH will start either of the Big(ger) Lads – whoever’s doing the job in training right now. Perhaps both, but when is Lover going to get in on the act? No idea about Nolan; surely CH saw how much more dangerous we were when he went off and we went 4-4-2? With Sol and Willo at the back we look easily solid enough to do that.

  11. Wow. I thought everyone would be as bored as me. But then not everyone has a pile of Initial Gate submissions to wade through…

    I hope there’s some good streams tomorrow. Too long without watching the Toon; I’m getting the shakes…

  12. Whumpie

    In my book though mate, when a guy has just scored 2 in the reserves, could have had more, (meaning he gets into better positions than Nolan), scored in last first team game at Stamford bridge ect ect and the other guy just clearly hasn’t done it over 7 games then it is time for a change of formation. If he comes on and doesn’t look ready then fine, nothing stopping Hughton from changing it back; but the point is how will we know if he never tries him. Players like Ranger can suddenly be ready for it within a couple of weeks and match fitness. Also that Hughton watches the training is complete bollox, what does Nolan do in training? make fart jokes? Some players just turn it on in games and I think Ranger is one of those players. At the end of the day it is CH’s decision and his career on the line not mine.

  13. said it as a joke..thats were ch plays him…u could be good in trianing..doesnt mean shit..u got 2 play players like they improve..not the old shola or others have trying to do that for years..if these players are not going to play regular football..what are they doing at the club..ranger needs to play.. becasue them lot are not going to be first team centre coming off the bench should be him..u got 2 look at the bigger picture..apart from carrol we dont need them..

  14. any way..if ranger keeps playing..he is fit then either..shola loven or others..they dont play much they cant be anywhere near..his fitness..because they are not playing regular games..

  15. what’s asim short for? asimpleton??

    joking aside tho mate you do talk some right bollocks.

  16. Ha! Ta, TC; a voice of reason. If not diplomacy.

    But Asim, you just don’t seem to be very balanced on this, in my view. Nolan has been off the boil recently, so I get your point. Ranger’s had a couple of great games with the ressies, and one with the seniors. Point taken again. But that doesn’t make Nolan absolute carp, or Ranger the next Big Al. One of them is still the master and commander figure you need in the prem, and the other is still a rather unreliable, petulent teenager.

    Yes, I do want to see Ranger on instead of Nolan; it’ll be interesting. But to say what CH sees in training is irrelevant it, as the Right Honerable TC says…
    is bollox.

  17. If Nolan keeps his goals per game ratio he’d have scored 15 goals this season. Thats not a bad return for the top flight. Other than Bent at the Mackems you rarely have a player outside the top 4 scoring 20 plus a season nowadays.

  18. I think Nolan’s looked off the boil because (a bit like this time last season) because opposition managers have seen too much of CH’s Plan A and worked out how to break it. Nolan hasn’t become a bad player; he’s just part of a system that’s been sussed.

  19. I would like to see Carroll get one tomorrow – to get his own confidence up and to give Cappello something to think about. But Shola’s really showing his stuff at the moment, so CH will probably stick with him.
    Any chance of both, CH? Then bring Ranger or Lover on for whichever one isn’t doing the job? Just a thought, like. :)
    (And I still think Jonas and Routledge should be staying behind after training, Becks fashion, to do an hour of crossing practice…)

  20. TOON CHICKEN!your name says it all..put your points across..instead of saying i am talking bollocks..are u 2 chicken to put your points across.

  21. If both Shola and Carroll started up front I would be right pissed off.


    I’d rather smash my bollocks with a sledgehammer than watch that shyte!

  22. @Whumpie – agreed, we need a change of tactics
    Doubt CH will drop Nolan so go for 4-3-1-2 – we’re playing Wigan ffs not one of the top 6 – fkin attack

  23. doesnt matter were u put nolan..he isnt going to move forward to support the front playing him in midfield with 442..will put us on the back foot..we then dont wont to be overrun in the most important part of the team..

  24. Agree toonsy dont think both shola and carrol should start , if we go 442 id like to see carrol and mclovin

  25. I think Loverboy must be going through a rough patch or summat – not seen owt of him for ages. As for Shola and Carroll up front – why not? They are totally different players, and looked pretty good at the end against Citeh.
    Admittedly I’d rather see Lover in there, but if CH thinks he’s off the boil, best not.

    fourfouroneone – I like the idea of a 4-3-1-2. Any idea of who?

  26. On Nolan, let’s figure what CH & CC see every day in practice.

    Based on a 4-5-1, Nolan has a role of being the first line of defense, and trying to do some offense behind the striker. The staff sees Nolan doing his defensive role pretty well. Nolan slows up some attacks. Nolan is not way out of position. Nolan does not over commit on attack. So who else can fill that role? CH & CC watch Xisco, Loven, Ranger and the rest. None of these guys, as far as we know, has shown a preference to be happy being primarily defensive. So, by default and human nature, Nolan retains his place in the 4-5-1. His only real competition may come form Tiote, but the staff loves that DM quality help for the back line.

    If CH & CC decide on a 4-4-2, then Nolan has to compete with Barton, Tiote, Guthrie, et. al. for a spot. Nolan scored a lot of goals last year in the 4-4-2, so he may be the preferred player in that formation, too. So it is up to someone, or injury, to outperform and make Nolan a member of the bench.

  27. toonsy says:
    October 15, 2010 at 2:04 pm

    “If both Shola and Carroll started up front I would be right pissed off.


    How do you know that would be the tactic, Maybe we would get the ball wide and give the wingers something to hit instead on Nolan chugging up at the last minute like a hippo running through treacle.

  28. Assuming Lover does have a problem, how about starting with:

    Raylor – Sol – Willo – Jose
    Routledge – Tiote – Jonas
    —–Shola – Carroll

    Then stick Ranger on for any of the front 3 – whichever isn’t doing their bit.

  29. how about are secound string..more goals and looking like they would score going forward every time..2 cup games 7 goals all away from home..

  30. Asim – nice thought, but they’d be torn apart by the seniors. Look at Ranger and Lua Lua – both stars at their level, but tend show their lack of experience when on the bigger stage.

    Ranger is damned close, though. Fantastic against Chelski.

  31. every1 shows a lack of experience..but you need 10 games in a row to jugde players..untill that happens then u wont realy see if he can cut it..lot of people said jonas couldnt cut took him 60 games to play like he did agaisnt city last week..every thing about him was spot on..end product was great and his goal..

  32. Carroll isn’t getting the support he needs off Nolan. He’s not Ibrohimovich and can’t play just on his own up front. Ranger or Lovenkrands are both ideal to play up there with him as they feed off his flick ons and draw defenders making space for him. Sure Nolan defends from the front and tracks back all the time, but do we really need that at home to Wigan? What people forget is that as Nolan drops off (into the fullback positions sometimes) the opposition can push on and only have Carroll to mark. If we had Ranger or Lovenkrands (both rocket heeled forwards) playing off Carroll, it would give the opposition something to think about instead of just being able to push out and leave a Centre Half with Carroll. Sometimes attack is the best form of defense.

  33. Drop Tiote, for imo a DM is not needed for a start at home matches. Put backwards Nolan to Mid,or if guthrie is fully fit,start Him.

    Still,i am being pessimistic and go for a lost against Wigan.

    NUFC 2-3 Wigan.

    Though hopefully,9-1 to NUFC win would be fabulous. :lol:

  34. @41 Whumpie: Always play attacking formation at Home. for Me. 4-3-3 is the best and most stable attacking formation for NUFC.

    (4-3-3 formation)




    Sub/bench: Nolan,Tiote,Krul,Leon Best,Ryan,Smith,Sol.

    This is taking account that when all are fit. So for tmr match,

    GK change to Krul.
    Gosling change Nolan.

    then Sub Bench:soldeberg,Tiote,Shola,Jonas,Sol,Ryan,Smith.

  35. I hope Hughton has realised that N’Zobia will wanna come an f### us over right good and proper, just like all ex-NUFC players do when they come back to SJP. That Bramble goal last time was just embarrasing.