Martinez backing for Rodallega

04 May 2011 01:16
Latics boss Roberto Martinez has full faith in striker Hugo Rodallega after the Columbian's handball gifted Everton a penalty at the weekend. Rodallega has been under pressure from supporters given his poor performance at Sunderland a little over a week ago, but Martinez insists that the penalty aside, Rodallega put in a good shift. “First of all, Hugo performed very well – there was a big difference from the previous game. His performance against Everton was very, very good,” Martinez told the Evening Post. “His action reflected the responsibility and the tension that games this time of year come with, and it’s important we all learn from it. “We are all disappointed with what happened, but Hugo has the full support of everyone at the football club. He is a very strong character, and he’ll win many points for us in the future. “Experiences like this make you a better player, and hopefully he can carry on working hard and scoring goals.” Rodallega is more than likely to start the game at Aston Villa this weekend and Martinez is tipping the Columbian to reach full form for the final three games of the season. “Hugo is a very positive person, but it was a difficult moment for him as you can imagine,” Martinez added. “To work so hard and not be able to finish with a winning feeling is hard to take. “But Hugo has a strong group of players around him and he’s ready to get rid of that frustration as quickly as possible. “Things like that happen –that’s football. But it’s important you don’t allow things like that stop you from growing as a person and as a footballer. “His overall play and work rate was very good. It’s all too easy to measure strikers by their goals and number of shots, but it’s about more than that. “It’s important in the situation we’re in to defend as a team and attack as a team, and the strikers are the first line of our defence. “In that respect, he did well against Everton, and he’s ready to go again at Aston Villa.”