Report from Roots Hall where Latics suffered their first defeat of 2018, going down 3-1 to Southend United on Saturday afternoon.
- Match Report: Southend United 3 – 1 Wigan Athletic
- Goals from Michael Turner, Marc-Antoine Fortune and Michael Kightly give Chris Powell’s Shrimpers the win
- James Vaughan’s first Latics goal in response for Latics
Latics suffered their first defeat of 2018 on Saturday afternoon as they went down 3-1 to Southend United, who remain unbeaten under new boss Chris Powell.
Paul Cook’s side couldn’t have got off to a worse start in Essex as Michael Turner put the Shrimpers ahead before Marc-Antoine Fortune scored against his former club for 2-0.
James Vaughan gave Latics hope with his first goal for the club but Michael Kightly made sure of the points in the final ten minutes, finishing from close range.
Cook made two changes from the win over Gillingham last time out, with Callum Elder and Gavin Massey returning in place of Reece James and Ryan Colclough.
The hosts were ahead after just three minutes as Stephen McLaughlin’s free-kick from the right was headed in at the back post by Turner.
On the quarter hour, Latics had their first opportunity for a response as Callum Elder’s cross fell kindly for Nick Powell, who surprisingly fired off target when well-placed from 12 yards.
Max Power was the first to force a save from Southend goalkeeper Mark Oxley, shooting direct from a free-kick from 25 yards after Powell was clattered by Anton Ferdinand.
Soon after, though, Fortune made it 2-0, finishing neatly past Christian Walton from Simon Cox’s flick-on.
Cox could have then made it three six minutes later as he fired just over from Ben Coker’s cross from the left.
After a delay early in the second-half following a clash of heads between Fortune and Dunkley, Latics were thankful for a Dan Burn goal-line clearance to deny Ferdinand a third for the Shrimpers after the experienced defender managed to get space in the area from a Southend set-piece.
Cook made a double change just after the hour mark and it paid immediate dividends. First, Gary Roberts, who replaced Michael Jacobs, broke down the left and cut-back for a number of Latics players in the box only to see his cross cleared. Then Latics got one back as Vaughan, who came on for Gavin Massey, finished well for his first Latics goal from a Nathan Byrne cross from the right.
A leveller almost came two minutes later as a well-delivered Power corner was headed over by Burn.
Grigg was then denied from a Power cross as Latics applied pressure but the decisive the third soon came for the hosts as Kightly fired in from close range after Christian Walton saved Simon Cox’s initial effort.
Southend United: Oxley; Coker (Capt), Turner, Demetriou, Ferdinand; Kightly (McGlashan 90), Timlin, McLaughlin, Yearwood; Fortune (Ladapo 69), Cox (Harrison 85).
Subs: Bishop, Bwomono, Kyprianou, Klass.
Wigan Athletic: Walton; Byrne, Dunkley, Burn, Elder; Morsy (Capt), Power; Jacobs (Roberts 62), Powell (Colclough 86), Massey (Vaughan 62); Grigg.
Subs: Jones, Bruce, Perkins, Fulton.