REPORT: WIGAN ATHLETIC 1 BLACKPOOL 0Oriol Riera’s first goal in a Wigan Athletic shirt was enough to bag Latics their first win of the season over Blackpool in a dominant performance at the DW Stadium.
After cruel outcomes in their previous two games, Uwe Rosler’s men took no chances against local rivals Blackpool, and put together a dominant performance to record their first win of the season, with plenty of players catching the eye with impressive performances.
It was a lively beginning to the game, and both sides gave the referee plenty of work to do early on, with James McArthur and David Perkins both going into the referee’s book in the opening six minutes of the match.
The game soon settled down however and it was a fantastic first half for Latics, as Uwe Rosler’s men enjoyed almost total control of the game, creating several chances.
The attack was spearheaded by Callum McManaman, who continued his breathtaking start to the season and caused countless problems for the visitors down both flanks with his impressive turn of pace.
The first chance of the game fell to captain Emmerson Boyce, who fired wide on the volley from an Emyr Huws free kick on the right hand side.
Latics were soon on the attack again, and Callum McManaman was unlucky not to find the target with his first-time effort from a low cross, after excellent play from striker Oriol Riera.
McManaman’s pace continued to cause problems for Blackpool and the winger’s neat skill and cross opened up a great opportunity for Don Cowie, who couldn’t get his header on target.
Wigan Athletic’s strong pressure was soon rewarded though, and the hosts took the lead in the 34th minute, when new signing Riera broke the deadlock with his first goal for the club, finishing the ball smartly into the bottom corner from the left hand side of the area.
Latics continued to press forward and could have doubled their lead within five minutes, with Callum McManaman again going close. The winger was found down the middle by McArthur, but his strike was blocked by a Blackpool defender. McManaman again went close at the end of the half, linking up well with Huws before just firing wide of the target.
The hosts continued to control the second half, with Blackpool rarely threatening Scott Carson in the Latics’ goal.
Callum McManaman again looked dangerous for Wigan and found Riera, whose low effort was fired straight at goalkeeper Joe Lewis.
However, it was a rare attack from Blackpool that arguably produced the best chance of the half, when substitute Nile Ranger fired wide from close range after a low cross from Ishmael Miller.
Miller looked dangerous again soon after, using his strength well to evade the Latics defence, but his low cross was hooked away by James McArthur.
Wigan soon regained control however and the eye-catching Rob Kiernan could have doubled their advantage with ten minutes to go, but he was unable to get his header on target from a Tavernier free kick.
Blackpool tried to carve out a chance in the final few minutes, with Lundstram hitting the wall from a free kick, but Latics were able to secure a win in what was a comfortable performance.