Under Roberto Martinez Wigan have had the longest period of consistency on the pitch than most other teams. Our turn over of the playing staff in the past couple of years has been significantly less than for us in previous years and for other teams in and around us.
One thing though has always struck me, ever since day one Martinez has always played with a front three. Right back when we played 4-3-3 to now with our 3-4-3 flexible formation. Going forward their have always been three players, and it has struck me how similar each has been over the years.
If we take the team that started it all off with the 2-0 win over Aston Villa, and we look at the front three that played. The main man was Hugo Rodallega, he was then back up by the wide man of Charles N'Zogbia and with a attacking midfielder of Jason Koumas.
In terms of the players we have now it is a big change, but in terms of the style of player, the system works the same as it did from day one. A main striker who can hold the ball up and lay it off to the players behind him, we then have a winger who can switch from side to side and add some real attacking intent. This is then backed up be a floating creative midfielder who can create the chances.
Follow on to the side which inspired our climb out last season, the names have changed but the roles haven't. Instead of Rodallega it is Di Santo, and instead of N'Zogbia it is Victor Moses, with Shaun Maloney the replacement of Koumas.
They all have the same roles, and once they hit top for it worked a treat as we saw. So breaking down our attacking options to these three slots, you can see why at times we have struggled to look threatening when going forward.
For most of last season we have a front man, and the wide man who could get the positions and look like they might score the goals, but we didn't have the creative spark or glue as you will to bring it altogether. The introduction of Shaun Maloney changed all that and it is underestimated by the media how much he changed our side, the answer is massively.
Like wise this season, we have had no winger to replace Victor Moses. The addition of Arouna Kone was meant to allow Franco Di Santo to drift into the wider areas and play that more creative role he seems to enjoy. Personally for me he is better through the middle, much like Kone is. So in affect we have two players playing in the same position with no wide man to work with.
Roll on Callum McManaman and after two games in the side he gives us that extra option and something for other teams to think about. It isn't only he who has changed our results in recent weeks, Arouna Kone hitting top form has had something to do with, but the younger winger means opposition defenses have to think twice about who they should be marking.
They have one more job to do, and our players have one less thing they have to work harder at.
The addition of Aden McGeady in January could have been the instant change we needed. As it was it didn't happen, so now we must try to make do with what we have, and hopefully with all three of our forward players hitting top form, it should help.
It does show what will be top of Martinez's shopping this this summer though, one attacking winger to go. Hopefully for us it will Aden McGeady as a big name signing like him could start to show the turning of a corner at Wigan.
Before all that that we have to see ourselves safe this season.