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Club News


13 March 2014

Uwe Rosler praises match winners Ali Al Habsi and Jordi Gomez in gutsy performance.

Jordi Gomez provided the solitary goal in Wigan Athletic’s 1-0 victory over Sheffield Wednesday at the DW Stadium in the Sky Bet Championship last night.

The Spanish midfielder was credited by Uwe Rosler following the game, alongside his manager’s other match winner Ali Al Habsi who saved Leon Best’s penalty in the first half.

Rosler described the two performances by saying:

“We believed in ourselves, we wanted to win and we got the job done.

“In the end two of my players proved to be the match winners at both ends of the pitch and both Ali Al Habsi and Jordi Gomez must receive some credit.”

“I think the penalty awarded to us was a clear penalty,” Rosler added.

“It was great combination play between Callum McManaman and James Perch and James is now realising his attacking potential in the last two games.

“Jordi gave us exactly what we needed, he’s cool, calm and he converted the penalty easily.”

Focussing on the penalty Latics conceded in the first half, Rosler said he understands any frustration from Sheffield Wednesday boss Stuart Gray, but praised Ali Al Habsi for making up for his mistake.

“I felt that it was a clear penalty in the first half, but I think it would have been wrong to give him a red card because James Perch was in the right position to intercept the ball and the ball was travelling away from goal.

“I can understand if Stuart Gray feels his side should have been playing against 10 men, because sometimes those decisions go against a goalkeeper.

“Ali has been a match winner for us since I have been the manager here and he continued to show just how crucial he can be, with what was a very good penalty save.”

Rosler’s Latics were forced to fight for their victory at the DW, and he admitted his side were under pressure after their victory over Manchester City in the FA Cup on Sunday.

“On Sunday the whole nation was behind us and against Sheffield Wednesday a lot of people were waiting for us to slip up.

“We didn’t do that and for me it was unbelievable to see that we did a professional job.

“Yes, we didn’t play our best and yes, we can definitely do better, but in terms of guts and belief I can't really ask for any more from my players.”

Praising the impacts made by his substitutions, Rosler welcomed back Nick Powell from injury, and said that it was the belief of his players which saw them through to collecting all three points.

“We wanted the three points tonight and I’ve got to credit our second half performance for the way we got back on top of the game.

“We consistently pushed Sheffield Wednesday back and we restricted them to one chance in the second half.

“I felt the need to add some energy to the performance and that’s what happened, the substitutions gave us a big lift.”

Rosler added:

“It’s great to have Nick Powell back out there and the first thing he was involved with he played a brilliant pass to send James McClean forward.

“His quality in that moment gave the whole stadium and the team a lift. Callum McManaman gave us some of those moments as well and Marc-Antoine Fortune worked as hard as he always does, he really helped us towards the end.”

One notable absentee from the game was Chris McCann, who suffered multiple fractures to his knee cap and has now undergone surgery.

Rosler gave an update on his midfielder, saying:

“Chris McCann had his operation on Tuesday night, it went very well and the specialist was particularly happy.

“The bad news is that it will take time for him to come back and we saw against Sheffield Wednesday how much we miss him.

“Chris is a very reliable player, a top professional and a dream for any manager because he can play in a variety of different positions.

“We missed is physicality and his box-to-box mentality, he’s a driving force and he’s somebody I hope can make a speedy recovery, but we’ll have to wait until next season for him.”

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