Match Preview – Brighton v Wigan Athletic

wiganhomepreview2017

Wigan Athletic – the team
We’re sure it hasn’t been mentioned at all, but Wigan were once owned by Dave Whelan who broke his leg in an FA Cup Final. He bought Wigan in 1995 and turned them from a lower league club into a staple of the Premier League, where their 10 season run incuded a number of famous great escapes from the drop. They even won the FA Cup in 2013, shocking Manchester City 1-0 in the final. This was even more special for owner Dave Whelan who once broke his leg in an FA Cup Final. Unfortunately for the Latics, they were relegated that same season with club legend Roberto Martinez leaving for Everton. It’s been largely downhill since then, and they even endured a one season stay in League One last time out. They did win the title at the first attempt, but look destined for a quick return to the third tier unless some sort of miracle can occur.

Wigan – the place
The town of Wigan has a population of 97,000, making it roughly the same as Worthing. This goes someway to explaining why the DW Stadium always looks so sparse as a quarter of the entire town could fit into it. It is famous for Wigan Pier which, if you go to expecting to be able to win a toy on the crane machines, will leave you sorely disappointed. Former sports retalining giant JJB originated from Wigan and once owned by Dave Whelan who broke his leg in an FA Cup Final. Wigan is also home to the World Pie Eating Championships which sound bloody fantastic and are definitely going on the bucket list.

Wigan – the people
Among famous people from Wigan are The Eight Lancashire Lads, a dancing troupe who gave Charlie Chaplin his entertaining debut no less. Sky Sports News presenter and her of a permanent sour face Kay Burley hails from the town, as does wrestler The British Bulldog. Perhapst most famous though is businessman Dave Whelan, who once broke his leg in an FA Cup Final.

A good WeAreBrighton.com memory of Wigan at home
If you think this game against Wigan is important, it is nothing compared to the Latics visit to the Goldstone in April 1997. The penultimate game at the Goldstone was must win if the Albion were to keep alive their hopes of avoiding relegation out of the Football League. Wigan arrived well on course for promotion but they ended up on the end of a 1-0 defeat, Craig Maskell netting the only goal midway through the second half.

A bad WeAreBrighton.com memory of Wigan at home
Half of the Withdean crowd hadn’t even got through the turnstiles, let alone onto the running track before Wigan were 2-0 up on the 2005 visit to the Theatre of Trees. Jimmy Bullard and Lee McCulloch had the visitors 2-0 up inside four minutes and Gary Teale made it three before 20 was on the clock. It ended 4-2 and Wigan were quite rightly promoted from the Championship come the end of the campaign.

Familiar names
Will Grigg on fire… it doesn’t get much more familiar than that nonsense that went viral across the summer.

Dangermen
Championship defences have proven to be very effective fire fighters as Grigg has managed only the five league goals this season. Nick Powell looks the main danger having plundered five in just 17 games, including a hat-trick on Friday that ensured Wigan came from 2-0 down to defeat Barnsley 3-2.

Betting
We are fully expecting a Brighton win. The bookies have cottoned onto the fact Anthony Knockaert is actually quite bloody good. So have a whack on Solly March anytime at 3/1.

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