…As West Brom seeks to end Wigan jinx
The DW Stadium will play host to a clash between two sides with their tails up today when Wigan takes on West Bromwich Albion. Nigerian international, Osaze Odemwingie, whose brace in his team’s 2-0 defeat of Southampton last weekend ensured the maximum three points on offer, will look to grab more goals today to keep his side in the race for Champions League slots. After managing just one win from its first eight English Premier League matches this term, Wigan has sprung into life with consecutive wins in its past two games.
The last of those results, a victory over Tottenham at White Hart Lane, has been the highlight of its campaign to date. And fifth-placed West Brom, which is proving to be early-season surprise packet, will be keen to keep in touch with the Champions League qualification spots. West Brom has won three of its past six matches and although those triumphs have all come against the current bottom three – Reading, Queens Park Rangers and Southampton – the manner in which it has gone about its business remains impressive. But the fact that West Brom has not beaten Wigan in the Premier League in four years is sure to fill the 13th-placed side with confidence ahead of this match-up. And West Brom manager, Steve Clarke says his side has to remain on its toes despite its impressive start to the season.
“We’re focusing on our primary objective, which is making sure the Albion remains in the Premier League next season. That’s always our first target,” Clarke told Sky Sports during the week. “We’ve had a good start, but now, we have to build on that. The more we feel comfortable in the lead, the more objectives we’ll set for ourselves. “I want more, if I’m being honest,” he told BBC WM. “We’re not getting greedy; we’re not getting carried away.
We know what our expectation levels are within the club. But, if I look back at our games over the season so far, with a bit more luck, we could have had more.” West Brom was especially unlucky not to have salvaged something from its losses to Manchester City and Newcastle, which preceded its latest win against Southampton, with late goals to both opponents costing them dearly._ Meanwhile, Clarke hailed the recent performances of Zoltan Gera, who has thrived despite being moved around the park due to the team’s personnel issues.
“Zoltan Gera has played in a different position over the last couple of games because of injuries, playing little number 10 role behind the striker,” Clarke said. “He’s done really well, but when Zolly’s in the moment, like he is now, you have to play him anywhere.