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Wigan V Man Utd at The DW Stadium : Match Preview
Published : 11 Apr 2012 17:05:11Rss feed
Martinez gets apology over Chelsea goals .
Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has received an apology from referees' chief Mike Riley following his side's controversial defeat at Chelsea on Saturday. Martinez claimed his relegation-threatened side were "robbed" as Chelsea struck twice from apparently offside positions to secure a 2-1 Barclays Premier League win at Stamford Bridge. The Spaniard, whose men take on Manchester United on Wednesday, has since spoken to Riley, of the Professional Game Match Officials Board, over the matter and says the body accept mistakes were made. Martinez said: "He just said he understands that at the level of refereeing in this league, they should get that call right. "I think that is a very honourable way to face mistakes. "We are all capable of making mistakes and it is about how you react to them."
Martinez was strong in his criticism of the officials after the game, branding the performance of assistant Dave Bryan as "disgusting". Latics face a daunting task as they return to action against United, the champions and league leaders, at home. They have a poor record against Sir Alex Ferguson's men having lost all 14 games they have played against them. Martinez has been on the end of five of those defeats, his side conceding 21 goals in the process.
He said: "The performances we have had at Anfield and Stamford Bridge this season have got rid of that block. "Against Manchester United you have to be perfect and we know now we can be perfect against these sides. Mentally we are ready for that. "We have been able to play at a very good standard in the last nine games and that is what pleases me most. That shows the group is ready to compete against anyone. "We are now facing the champions and the team most in form in the league. It is a great football occasion for us, that is why we want to be in this league." Striker Hugo Rodallega (knee) is unlikely to return. The Colombian, who has been out for the past month, is making good progress but next Monday's trip to Arsenal is thought to be a more realistic target. Fellow forward Victor Moses is fit after suffering a slight knock at Chelsea on Saturday while midfielder David Jones is also close to match fitness. Rio Ferdinand, who is likely to be rested for the match, is approaching his 10th anniversary as a Manchester United player more hungry than ever to collect some silverware.
When Ferdinand walked through the doors of Old Trafford after joining for a then British record £29.1million fee in 2002, he said his time at United would be measured by trophies. His haul is pretty impressive. He has won the Champions League, Club World Cup, two Carling Cups and a sixth Premier League title is seemingly on its way, with United eight points clear. Yet the 33-year-old is not satisfied. It is not just the ones that got away which rankle, it's the knowledge that at some point in the not-too-distant future, his career will come to an end. And the worst thing Ferdinand can imagine is to finish as a loser. "There are not many players who leave this club doing exactly what they want to do," he said.
"It wouldn't be good finishing your career with a loss, or by not winning something. "The losses now do my head in. To think I wouldn't be able to rectify it the season after because I had retired or left would rankle. "I am not thinking about retirement. I am trying to play as long as I can. I have another year after this and I want to do another 10. "But whenever it is, I would want to go out on a high note." Wigan would appear to be one of the least formidable obstacles to United gathering the 11 remaining points they may require to end Manchester City's remaining hopes. The Latics have not claimed so much as a draw from 14 previous meetings with United and the aggregate score from the last five games between the north-west neighbours is a staggering 21-0. However, Ferdinand has been around long enough to know nothing can be taken for granted, which is one of the values of experience he hopes has rubbed off on the younger members of United's squad. "It is the little things you pick up on," he said.
"In my first season, towards the end, we drew a game and I was a little bit depressed because it was two points lost in a game we were expected to win. "Gary Neville was sat nearby and his attitude was that could be the point that wins the league, which turned out to be the case. "It gets you out of being in a slump and a depressed mood. You look at things from a different angle. "Younger players watch the older ones. If we start panicking, so will they. "We just have to remain calm and continue playing the way we do all the time." United are expected to make changes. Tom Cleverley and Chris Smalling will be amongst those hoping for a start, with Paul Scholes likely to be rested. Nani (ankle) is fit but did not even make the bench against QPR on Sunday.
Wigan V Man Utd - view commentary, squad, and statictics of the game live.
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