I started with the Spaniard who we all love to hate, or at least we did. I have always been a fan of Jordi, his on the ball ability to me is one of the best we have ever had at this club what I often to question is his passion and willingness to chase the ball down. At the back end of least season playing in that sitting midfield role Jordi excelled and you hoped whoever came in would take that into account.
Did Owen Coyle do that? Did he hell.
He stuck Jordi out wide where he is about as much use as a chocolate fire guard. That said he did pick up a few goals and assists when he could, but his influence in games was limited at best. It was when Uwe Rosler moved in that we saw just what Jordi can do.
Moving into that holding role again Jordi turned his season around and was rightly awarded the player of the season. When we lost both Chris McCann and Ben Watson you wondered who would step their game up and Jordi did that in some style for the Latics. Gomez finished the season with 11 goals to his name and a hat full of assists and key passes, by far one of the most improved players under Rosler.
Hope we get him tied down to a new contract.
I moved onto the man who very nearly kept us up last season. Callum McManaman very nearly was the spark who fired us into a tenth consecutive Premier League year, it wasn't to be he did however help with an FA Cup win though!
You would have though Callum would have stepped up this season and stepped up big. Unfortunately we haven't seen that consistent performance from the young winger this year, for whatever the reason. You could argue the injury from back end of last season has hung over him all year, and that the lack of fitness under Owen Coyle did even more.
For me it is the fact teams are wary of him now. He is still learning his trade and one bad season doesn't make a poor player. You would have felt Callum would be instrumental to all the good this with us this season, he has on occasion but not enough for someone of his talent.
Bigger and stronger next year Callum, we believe!
When it looked like McCarthy would remain a Wiganer. That sadly didn't come to pass, he moved to Everton where he was part of a midfield that battled against the best in the Premier League and more often than not came out on top. Unfortunately for Everton they couldn't nick that fourth spot, they did nick James off us for only £12 million though.
Lastly was another on of our academy graduates with a massive future ahead of him. With Ali Al Habsi out injured and Mike Pollitt coming to the end of his playing days, it was clear that Lee Nicholls would be the number two for the early part of the season. You felt if he got his chance in goal he would have to take it.
That chance came when Scott Carson was injured in the warm up against Charlton Athletic. Nicholls was thrown into the team and kept a clean sheet. The keeper didn't concede for 225 minutes of football, before Huddersfield defender Oliver Norwood headed home at the DW Stadium.
Nicholls went onto play a total of eight games in succession for the club. Keeping three clean sheets and conceding eight goals. Sadly for Lee mistakes in Europe will probably over shadow what was an impressive spell by the keeper at a time when the team was beginging to struggle under Owen Coyle.
Defiantly thing to be proud of from Lee and he showed what he was made of.
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