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Match Preview: NK Maribor vs Wigan Athletic

An important game on two fronts this one. A win would mean European Qualification (we hope) and also a first win for the new management of Uwe Rosler. The new gaffer has his first chance to impress the Wigan's a head of the all important derby at the weekend.

Ben Hoskins

Uwe Rosler must have looked on at the weekend and wondered what kind of side he was taking on. We looked last at times against Millwall. For me it was a case of poor team selection by Graham Barrow, instead of changing things around he kept them the Coyle way, and well we got the same results.

Now hopefully things will change. During a very impressive press conference on Monday Uwe said a lot of things which will have made Wigan fans hopefully think this guy is the right man for the job. Of course Owen Coyle had a very good first interview as well, so only time will tell as to whether or not we have the real thing now.

It is more than 100% likely that we will play 4-3-3 in Maribor but the squad we will feature is somewhat of an unknown. Now with four days to look and assess the player he has at his disposal, you wonder who and what will feature in the starting line-up against Maribor.

The side we go to Maribor will defiantly not feature Grant Holt, James McClean, Ivan Ramis and Will Keane as they are all unavailable or been left at home for the game. While we have four players on the injury list in Ali Al Habsi (who is closing in on a return), Shaun Maloney, Gary Caldwell and Juan Garcia.

That leaves us fairly thin on numbers in certain areas, mainly up front. It leaves only Nick Powell and Marc Antoine Fortune, personally I would like Fortune to start. Yet I have a feeling that Powell will be given a nod over the 32 year-old striker.

So what about Maribor? Well they go into the game having only lost one game in their last seven in all competitions. They managed to get a late late draw in Russia last time out in the Europa League keeping them in with a chance to qualify for the knockout stages.

That qualification though hinges on the other result in the group. If Zulte Waregem win then they go through automatically; if they draw and Latics win then Wigan would go through on goal difference. For Maribor to go through they have to beat Wigan and hope that Waregem lose.

Wigan just have to go out and do their job. Wigan the game lads for the fans, and for the new gaffer!

*While I have been writing this the team selection has been released for the game*

Wigan's Staring 11: Carson, Perch, Barnett, Rogne, Beausejour, McCann, McArthur, McManaman, Gomez, Espinoza, Powell.

Subs: Nicholls, Boyce, Shotton, Crainey, Watson, Fortune, Meadows