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Bruce rues duo's departure
23 Feb 2009 - 15:58:19
Wigan Athletic manager Steve Bruce believes his team's current dearth of goals can be traced back to last month's sales of Emile Heskey and Wilson Palacios.
The Latics have managed to find the net only once in four games since Heskey and Palacios left the JJB Stadium and they were involved in a particularly grim goalless draw at Middlesbrough on Saturday.
At the Riverside Stadium, Amr Zaki played a lone striker's role with Olivier Kapo operating behind him.
Bruce admitted that the ploy had back-fired, saying: "I don't think playing Kapo in that role really worked, and up front we've started to struggle a bit. With Heskey and Palacios going, and Valencia injured, we've lost a little bit of the cutting edge we had.
"We've always been a difficult team to beat, but at the moment we're missing creativity in the final third of the pitch. But we'll keep working on that aspect of our play and hopefully we can get things right going forward.
"It was horrible having to change things round in mid-season, but for obvious reasons we had to do that. At Boro we looked a bit more threatening when Rodallega came on, while Sibierski gave us composure.
"I thought we had two or three good chances towards the end, but unfortunately we didn't take them. In the end I thought it was a decent result, especially when you consider all the changes we've had to make recently.
"As the second half went on, there was only one side that was going to win it and that was us."