Writer: Ryan Kalisz
Date:Sunday May 22 2011
No interview here I`m afraid, but I`ll do my best to remember what was said over a couple of pints of hardcore limewater with worbo! I say 'remember`, but let`s face it, my memory is almost as solid as Carlo Ancelotti`s job... oh… sorry, I mean as non-existent.
We had a bit of banter about the situation of our two clubs; Wigan were facing relegation if they didn`t pull out the stops for today`s fixture, meanwhile Stoke were hoping to secure a top half finish and delicately place the red and white cherry on the extraordinary cake that has been this season. It was squeaky bum time for worbo`s beloved Latics, who he has been supporting since he was a wee worbo, and you could sense his apprehensiveness.
The way that 'Survival Sunday` could have potentially panned out was very complicated, which worbo and I did ponder over for a bit, but couldn`t be bothered to work it out exactly. In short; he reckoned that if Wigan lost, they were down for sure, with a draw being 'touch and go`.
So going into the match, from Wigan`s perspective, what didworbo think about his team`s chances? He concurred with me that Stoke aren`t just about long balls and abilities in the air, we can pass a ball and have fantastic counter-attacking threats in the likes of Jermaine Pennant and Mathew Etherington down the wings. But he felt that Wigan equally had their threats, Charles N`Zogbia especially is a fantastic winger on either side. He can cut players up and retain possession well had has been the kick-start to many Wigan attacks this season. Worbo felt it would be close, but had a feeling that his side could pull off a good result, predicting a 2-1 win.
Grandad knew it was going to be a tough game today and said: "I wouldn`t be a bit surprised if it`s a draw you know". I however, was quietly confident about grabbing the three points and predicted a 2-1 win for us… how wrong was I hey?
Stoke were dominating the first 20 minutes or so and were looking most likely to score, but we didn`t. We couldn`t put the chances away, and with the decisions going against us i.e. the disallowed goal and the stonewall penalty shouts; our fortune was not going to be so lucky this afternoon.
All credit to Wigan however! Worbo told me that Martinez organizes his squad in a manner that parallels Barcelona, which admittedly I did have a little chuckle over, but the more I watched them pass, the more I believed worbo`s word.
They deserved the points today and deserve extending their stay in the Premier League. It`s no skin off our nuts in all honesty, because we already secured a fourth year in the top flight and have Europe to look forward to next season.
It was great to meet worbo and pick his brains about the game. I wish him and all at Vital Wigan every success in the future, and hope we`ll see each other again soon! But obviously I`ll be hoping that he`ll be congratulating me the next time we do meet up.
Date:Sunday May 22 2011
Stoke secure marquee Bojan signing (Tuesday July 22 2014)
Stoke to offer free coach travel again (Monday July 21 2014)
Palacios fails Qatar medical (Monday July 21 2014)
Jerome left out of Germany squad (Saturday July 19 2014)
Palacios set for Qatar switch (Saturday July 19 2014)
Cameron given freedom of home city (Saturday July 19 2014)
23-man Stoke squad arrive in Germany (Friday July 18 2014)
Stoke announce 2014/15 squad numbers (Friday July 18 2014)
Which strikers could leave Stoke? (Friday July 18 2014)
Which midfielder's could leave Stoke? (Thursday July 17 2014)
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