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Arsenal vs Wigan and Reading vs Manchester City: Open Thread

arsenal wigan Arsenal vs Wigan and Reading vs Manchester City: Open Thread

For Wigan Athletic, it’s win or bust today. A draw won’t be good enough since the Latics would have to overcome Sunderland’s 11 goal difference on Sunday, so if Roberto Martinez’s side fail to beat Arsenal, we shall be saying goodbye to Wigan after eight consecutive seasons in the Premier League.

Arsenal, meanwhile, will be desperate for a win today to take the pressure off them and to put them in control of their own destiny when they face Newcastle on the final day of the season.

Arsenal starting XI: Szczesny, Sgana, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs, Rosicky, Arteta, Ramsey, Walcott, Podolski, Cazorla

Wigan starting XI: Robles, Kone, Alcaraz, McCarthy, Maloney, Gomez, McManaman, McArthur, Boyce, Espinoza, Scharner

In the other match today, interim manager Brian Kidd will take charge of Manchester City in their game against Reading at the Madejski Stadium in Berkshire.

For the TV and Internet times, check our schedule.

Before, during and after today’s match, join the conversation in the comments section below.

This entry was posted in Arsenal, Leagues: EPL, Manchester City, Reading, Wigan Athletic. Bookmark the permalink.

About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
View all posts by Christopher Harris →

53 Responses to Arsenal vs Wigan and Reading vs Manchester City: Open Thread

  1. Tayo says:

    I don’t know if anyone here watches the skysports feed but the intro is just superb. I hope NBC comes up with a nice intro unlike you know who…

  2. San Franciscan says:

    C’mon Wigan, I really hope the team stays up, I still remember the first day theyhad in the premier league. Though Chelsea will batter them but they showed how good they were until Crespo scored a 90 something minute goal. Do it for Bobby Martinez.

  3. Jason says:

    A Wigan win and that would mean the relegation battle goes on and the top 4 also goes on with advantage to Spurs. Best of both worlds. A Wigan draw or loss means only Arsenal and Spurs games of interest on Sunday. C’mon Wigan!

  4. Gary says:

    Arsenal are really up for this game and you wonder how long before tiredness takes its toll on Wigan who start with the same lineup as Saturday.

  5. Gary says:

    Terrible defending from a corner by Wigan. The writing’s on the wall for Wigan. Cannot see them come back from this one. Arsenal look more likely to score again.

  6. Guy says:

    Wigan now have to score 2 while holding Arsenal scoreless the rest of the way.

    Party’s over.

  7. Marc L says:

    Am I the only one with a FS2Go feed going utterly crazy (skipping back in time, etc.)

    Well actually I probably shouldn’t ask. Who in their right mind other than me would be watching City at Reading?

    Or, rather, should read “who in their right mind would be watching….”

  8. Gary says:

    Wigan are growing into the game and a few poor passes outside the box have let them down. They don’t look as sharp as they did on Saturday.

  9. Gary says:

    IS the great escape still on? WOW! what a goal by Maloney. Game on.

  10. The Gaffer says:

    Trademark free kick from Shaun Maloney. Exquisite goal!

    The Gaffer

  11. David says:

    What a second half we have in store. Both sides HAVE to go for the win.

    Wigan have to win or else they are effectively relegated even with a draw.

    Arsenal have to win to be in the driver’s seat to finish 4th. A draw would mean they would have to beat Newcastle and hope for Spurs to draw or lose to a Sunderland side that will know anything other than a big loss will keep them up.

    Hoping for a last minute decider.

  12. NeilO says:

    Lets go Wigan!! You can do it!!

  13. Phil Badger says:

    no way this match ends in a draw. Helps neither team at all. If still deadlocked with 10 mins left, this match will go crazy.

  14. San Franciscan says:

    Game Over.

  15. Guy says:

    Finis. For real, this time.

  16. Gary says:

    Terrible goalkeeping by Joel and Wigan now have a mountain to climb to avoid relegation. Pity since they were going for it.

    OK it’s now over. 3rd goal for Arsenal. Sunderland and company must now be relieved.

  17. Wigan looks to be DONE and DUSTED. 4-1 to the Arsenal in the 71st minute.

    Projected match-ups for your DVR:

    ESPN2 & ESPN Deportes – Newcastle vs Arsenal

    FOX Soccer & FOX Deportes – Tottenham vs Sunderland

    FOX Sports Net – ? (Chelsea vs Everton ?)

    FOX Soccer Plus – ? (Chelsea vs Everton ?)

  18. Guy says:

    Anyone want to take off on John Champion for referring to the Wigan keeper as “Joel” instead of “Robles”…..just like Gus? ;-)

  19. Bruce Gottesman says:

    So much for survival Sunday…

  20. Gary says:

    Arsenal may have won today but it’s far from kision accomlished for them for that 4th spot. Spurs should beat Sunderland easily now that Sunderland have nothing to play for and are safe. Newcastle could be spoilers and hold Arsenal to a draw or even beat them. Wonder how Wenger would feel that the French contingent at Newcastle might derail Arsenal’s CL spot.

    So Newcastle vs Arsenal, Spurs vs Sunderland and to some extent Chelsea vs Everton are the only games of interest on the last day.

    • Rick says:

      I agree it’s not over yet, but Newcastle has no more to play for than Sunderland, so why would you expect Sunderland to roll over against Spurs and Newcastle to come up with a great performance against Arsenal? Sounds like wishful thinking to me.

      • Rick says:

        Oh, and the Newcastle manager saying publicly he didn’t really care now if Arsenal beat them 4-0 probably wasn’t the best way to inspire his team.

      • kyle says:

        Except Pardew doesn’t like Wenger and I’m sure he’ll try his best to mess Arsenal up. Will be a very open game as a draw might not be enough for Arsenal.

        The last home game of the season for Newcastle and they will want to give their fans something to cheer about.

        This is going to be a tough game for Arsenal. Tougher than Spurs against Sunderland.

  21. “Survival Sunday” still has meaning for Arsene Wenger.

    Arsenal must win again in order for Wenger to keep his job.

    4th place in EPL is acceptable for the board at Arsenal, but 5th place is NOT.

    • San Franciscan says:

      So if Wenger got sacked, The Manchester United Manager will still be the longest serving manager in the EPL.

  22. Smokey Bacon says:

    Goodnight Vienna to Wigan. But how much improved are Arsenal since Christmas. Nobody chanting Wenger Out now. Expect them to go on and knock Spurs out on Sunday.

    • Just Asking says:

      It is amazing how little credit Gunners and Wenger get especially in this forum.

      • Piers Morgan can resume his whining for another 12 months…

      • The Gaffer says:

        Just Asking, this was one of those days where the vast majority of the soccer viewers were hoping that Arsenal would lose so it’d be a more entertaining final day of the season. Arsenal played well today and deserved the win.

        The Gaffer

        • Just Asking says:

          I guess this was also one of those days they decided to focus on Arsenal winning less trophies than Wigan. It also explains the other of those days where majority of viewers ridiculed Gunners in their second CL leg against Bayern.

  23. Guy says:

    The color commentator is the first pundit I’ve heard who has questioned Matrinez’s coaching abilities. I agree with his analysis. We’ll see, if Roberto moves on to a bigger club. I’ll be surprised if he winds up at Everton.

    • Guy says:


    • James says:

      The reason Martinez hasn’t done better at Wigan is that every year they lose their best players and then he has to try and get quality players on the cheap. I think his net spend is a profit of 800K pounds. It then takes the side time to settle and usually that means after January.

      I’m convinced that if he went to a bigger club with more money to spend and one that does not lose their best players that he would do very well. He was the one that instituted the playing style at Swansea before Rodgers got there. I think he’s a better manager than Rodgers and given an opportunity to manage a bigger club he will succeed. As a Liverpool supporter I’m willing to give Rodgers time to get things right but I believe Martinez is a better manager. He can also boast a trophy something Rodgers is still to achieve. Both are young and have time to set their mark. If Martinez went to Everton it would make the Merseyside derby even more interesting.

      • Guy says:

        “The reason Martinez hasn’t done better at Wigan is that every year they lose their best players and then he has to try and get quality players on the cheap.”

        I’m not sure this is anything more than conventional wisdom.

        Last week I posted Martinez’s line-ups from last May and this past September. They are almost exactly the same. No need for time to “settle in”. No reason to be asleep at the wheel until the very end of the season….but they were.

        The commentator pointed out that Wigan have finished worse in each of Martinez’s seasons. Small club, small budget, whatever. That just shouldn’t happen.

        Roberto is obviously a likable guy. That does not necessarily make him a great manager. There are some red flags there that I think will warn off the likes of Everton.

      • French Baguette of Love says:

        Who in particular are these great players they’ve lost? The only one that immediately leaps to mind in NZogbia, and you could easily make a case for addition by subtraction with that guy.

        • The Gaffer says:

          Leighton Baines, Antonio Valencia, Wilson Palacios (in his prime) — just to name a few.

          The Gaffer

  24. San Franciscan says:

    Fox Soccer on tv saying Wigan relegated from BPL is a developing story. How is it developing?

  25. Gary says:

    The reason Joel dived with his feet first that allowed Arsenal to score the 2nd goal is that while at Athletico Madrid he had a terrible head injury that set him back a few years. He was regarded as a better keeper than De Gea at the time.

    Did you know that during the 8 years that Wigan have been in the EPL and always relegation-bound that they have won more trophies than Arsenal who have always finished in the top 4 (assuming they do it again on Sunday). I think that’s correct. Crazy heh?

  26. FOX Soccer decided to use the “cheap” set (2 locked-down cameras, no studio camera men, green screen, “junior” production staff) at 1440 South Sepulveda again for Arsenal vs Wigan.

  27. San Franciscan says:

    They confirmed at the end that they will show Spurs game against Sunderland.

  28. Hoosiergunner says:

    Hooo-hooo-ray! Great game today… hopefully we keep it up through the weekend.

  29. Dust says:

    North London v the North East….

    I do NOT expect Farsenal will drop points v Newcastle…

    A Shame.

    avb will break Spurs points record in his first season with no URL at the end….

    Onwards and upwards!

    Looking forward to next Season..this IS over.

    • jtm371 says:

      you can’t give up the fight yet.who knows Toon might pull one out of their a$$.COYS!

      • Dust says:

        Can’t rely on Newcastle…

        More chance of CFC loosing and is winning 17-0 than Newcastle getting a draw or winning….

        If we win….no matter what I will be happy and look forward to next season.

        AVB has moved is forward…

  30. Ivan says:

    Goodbuy, Wigan! It’s been real and you will be missed!

    And, yet, amazingly, we get to “enjoy” anti-footballing sides like Stoke and Sunderland commit crimes against football in the Premier League yet another season…

    Life is unfair…

    • Guy says:

      “And, yet, amazingly, we get to “enjoy” anti-footballing sides like Stoke and Sunderland commit crimes against football in the Premier League yet another season…”

      All people have to do is beat ‘em and they’ll go away. Playing pretty football and getting relegated is not a formula for success in the Prem. Who is happier today…Wigan fans or Sunderland fans?

    • jtm371 says:

      blaming Stoke for staying up well that is not real deep thinking.

  31. IanCransonsKnees says:

    Of course it’s Stoke’s fault that Wigan are so powder puff.

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