Match Report: Wigan Athletic 2-2 QPR

Chris Brunskill

A game that neither side could afford to lose, saw them both pick up points and slightly lose ground on the teams above them. You could have expected a cage tight affair with neither side looking to give much away, yet instead we got an open flowing game with four goals, and it could have been more.

Predictably, we were the slow starters. Two changes to the side that faced Newcastle United, and its a never a good sign when one of your midfielders is sitting in your back three. David Jones was on the left hand side of a back three which featured the returning Adrian Lopez and the ever present Emmerson Boyce.

Yet even though we started slowly we were the better side. QPR were predictable and slow, the reason they are bottom the table, is the fact that they don't work as a team. Passing is slow and sloppy and none seems to know who to pass to or where their team mates are.

Big Harry's job is likely to be a very big one.

The new for Wigan though was one with a much happier tune. We worked hard off the ball and were looking to get it and pass it around like we do so well. When we did we were always going to be a threat on the ball. Jean Beasuejour on the left hand side having freedom to get crosses in and around the box as Jose Boswinga looked on.

It was hard to believe it took us so long to get in front. None seemed able to hit the target, or beat a Roberto Green who was there when they needed him. Green isn't one of the world's greatest keepers technically anyway, yet he has all the skill to be one with quick reactions time, which were keeping his side in the game.

It wouldn't be long before Wigan would strike though and from a left sided corner, the inform James McCarthy got his first goal of the season which was much deserved. The initial corner was headed away by Jamie Mackie, only for it to fall to McCarthy who volleyed it home. We have seen him score so often like that over his time at Latics it was great to see it again.

Could we hold on and even extend our lead? We looked like we could and should have done, yet poor defending (or should I say marking) saw us get pegged back only minutes after taking the lead.

QPR winning a corner on their left hand-side after the full back was tackled well by Emmerson Boyce. The resulting corner was swung in by Adele Taarabt, which was happily headed home by the free Ryan Nelson. How the aged defender managed to beat his man I don't know, but it shows you the experience you need at this level.

We felt a bit of injustice, especially after how well we had been playing. Yet you can see why we are both down the wrong end of the table. QPR were unable to stop us getting behind their full backs and getting into space, yet we were dire when trying to find that final ball or shot in the final third.

So at half time we went in level and wondering what we would have to do to break the deadlock.

It would be a long wait to another goal would go in. You felt the third goal would be important, in the general scheme of things it wasn't in the end, but had we managed to get it first, then I feel we could have gone on and won the game.

We had plenty of chances to score in the early stages of the second half as ever we do. James McCarthy could have scored, after getting the ball in a one on one situation with Roberto Green. Yet the keeper just came and smothered the ball away.

Green would then be at it again later to deny David Jones a goal with a volleyed shot. The resulting lose ball was the picked up by Arouna Kone who slotted it across the box to Jordi Gomez. The Spaniard hit it really well left the keeper beaten. Only for it to hit the post and bounce away.

I was getting that ominous feeling and I was right to. A poor pass in the defense and QPR would have their goal. Adrian Lopez who has been the star defender for Wigan, winning any ball high or low. Passed the ball across the box to an unsuspecting Emmerson Boyce. Shaun Wright-Phillips got onto the ball and slipped in to substitute Cisse who tapped the ball home.

Disaster and what would we do? Well go and score of course. Parity was restored only three minutes later when James McCarthy scored his second of the game. A one to two, give and go with Beasejour saw McCarthy have time and space to pick his spot and get Wigan level.

Wigan could have won it late on. After Kone beat several QPR players, he managed to lay it off to Mauro Boselli. The striker had the chance to become a hero, but his well places shot was just reached by a stretching keeper. And that my friend was all she wrote.

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