Wigan Athletic vs. Charlton Athletic
Date: Saturday 1st February 2014
Venue: The DW Stadium
Referee: Michael Bull
Two late goals from substitutes Marc-Antoine Fortune and Jordi Gomez saw Wigan come back from 1-0 down to defeat relegation threatened, Charlton Athletic.
Before this match, Wigan had kept five clean sheets in six games but it took just three minutes for Charlton to deny them another one as Marvin Sordell slid the ball past Ali Al-Habsi after some woeful defending.
Wigan threatened throughout the game but were unable to put the ball into the net until the 88th minute when Fortune coolly finished in the bottom corner. Then, in injury time, Jordi Gomez stepped up to curl a free-kick into the net to win Wigan the three points.
The visitors will feel as though they should have got something from the game after they started impressively and, after only three minutes Sordell took advantage of some abject defending from the Latics to score.
After this impressive start, however, Wigan took over and became the dominant side. Callum McManaman was at the heart of all of Wigan’s chances and he had a couple of shots saved well by Yohann Thuram-Ulien.
Charlton’s game-plan seemed to be to hit Wigan on the break and they did this successfully in the first half. Reza Ghoochannejhad had a shot parried away by Al-Habsi before he hit the crossbar from range soon after.
McManaman also hit the bar before the break after a good bit of play that saw Jean Beausejour pass to Chris McCann who then played in McManaman.
Immediately after half-time, the Latics had the ball in the back of the net courtesy of Nicky Maynard but he was judged to have been offside. After this, Wigan were relentless and created chance after chance and the introduction of Fortune and new loan signing Josh McEachran made a real difference to the dynamic of the team.
Ben Watson and Emmerson Boyce went close for Wigan before a Gomez free-kick was punched off the line and Fortune couldn’t quite get his head onto the ball to claim the equaliser.
Shortly after, McEachran received the ball on the edge of the box and played it through to Fortune who coolly slotted past the flailing Thruam-Ulien.
In a final twist, Gomez scored a free-kick from twenty yards as he curled it round the wall and, despite his best efforts, Thuram-Ulien couldn’t keep it out.
This victory should do the Latics the world of good as they continue their fight for promotion because they did not play very well yet won the game. After an unimpressive start to his Wigan career, Fortune is making the lone striker role his own and plays the part much better than Maynard. Wigan are beginning to look like a real team for the first time this season.