Martinez eager to end Wigan woe

24 August 2010 07:30

Wigan manager Roberto Martinez has demanded his players restore pride by avoiding Carling Cup humiliation at Hartlepool tonight.

The Spaniard is under pressure after seeing his side thrashed 4-0 by Blackpool and 6-0 by Chelsea in the opening two weekends of the Barclays Premier League season.

Defeat at League One Hartlepool in the second round is unthinkable for Martinez, who said: "We cannot be that weak and naive when things are not going our way, and that has been the case for the past year, not just this season.

"It is something we need to eradicate from our football club quickly."

Avram Grant has not found himself under the same pressure Martinez is experiencing, however West Ham's new manager has seen his side well beaten by Aston Villa and Bolton.

Tonight the Hammers face Oxford, who were promoted from the Blue Square Premier in May, and defender Winston Reid views the match as an opportunity for West Ham to belatedly kick-start their campaign. Reid said: "We haven't had the best start to the season - two games and no points. It's most important that we win. We have to go out to win all those cups because it's a chance to win a trophy."

Bolton manager Owen Coyle, who guided Burnley into the semi-finals two years ago, takes his side to League One outfit Southampton. Coyle said: "You want to win every competition you enter. We showed that at Burnley. The Carling Cup run we had there galvanised us and took us on collectively."

Many teams will rest senior players tonight and allow fringe members of squads the chance to impress, with Blackburn no different. Sam Allardyce's side take on npower Championship side Norwich at Ewood Park in the second round, and their options are limited by injuries to Vince Grella, Pascal Chimbonda, Keith Andrews and David Dunn, who are all unlikely to feature. Manager Allardyce said: "The side will be very experienced but there will be some of the younger element involved."

West Brom face Leyton Orient, Sunderland take on League One Colchester and Wolves manager Mick McCarthy will hand first-team debuts to 19-year-olds Sam Winnall and Danny Batth against Southend.

Source: PA