Roberto Martinez opted for a variation of the 4-3-3, with former Wolves man David Jones joined by Ben Watson and Mohammed Diame as a central 3, whilst strikers Rodallega, Moses and Di Santo were deployed in attack.
I’ve decided to mix things up a little and borrow from my American influences and offer a play-by-play style report of the days action, mainly due to my recovery from an appendectomy allowing me a lot more time to break away from the furore of sitting in the stands and make some real notes as the action unfolded.
Here is a breakdown of the play as it unfolded, with all the ups and downs, contradictive emotions and mood swings experienced during last Sunday’s Jekyll and Hyde showdown.
2 mins – The first shot of the game came following a long ball out of defence from Wolves. David Edwards took a touch past Alcaraz and shot low from the edge of the area, comfortably beaten away by Al Habsi.
4 mins – The first major talking point of the afternoon. Winger Stephen Hunt collected the ball on the edge of the area, beat the Wigan defender en-route into the area, was clearly caught by the on rushing Wigan goalkeeper but admirably choose to stay on his feet, regained his balance but the chance came to nothing. It’s safe to say a penalty and a card would have been inevitable had he taken a tumble.
7 mins – The first sign of continuing joy down the Wolves left side for Wigan became apparent. Victor Moses on the right side of the Wigan’s attacking trio picked the ball up on the flank, took on and beat both Ward and Hunt but was finally stopped in the area at the expense of a corner.
The opening 15 minutes was filled with pretty uninspiring football. It was clear to see why both teams have and will more than likely continue to struggle this season. Wolves continued to revert to the long ball lottery. Where on earth was Kevin Doyle up to this point?
16 mins – Stephen Hunt delivered his first telling cross of the afternoon from the left flank, finding David Edwards 6 yards out but his header went wide. Edwards seemed to be drifting from his position on the right side of midfield in search of his natural surroundings, Guedioura was having to fill in for him and Wolves were lacking in this area.