Wigan: Paying The Price Of Over-Success

by Thomas Baugh - Date: 2007-01-29 - Word Count: 322 Share This!

I think if a team can ever by too successful, Wigan Athletic have almost certainly proved it possible. From complete obscurity they stormed through League One and the Championship before having the nerve to finish midtable in the Premiership.

Now maybe, reality has dawned somewhat and they find themselves lingering perilously close to the drop zone with the teams below them closing in for the kill. I really hope for their sake, that their rise through the ranks isn't matched by a rapid fall from grace, although I do fear for their immediate future.

In Paul Jewell, they have a fantastic manager who has the track record to match his respected status. However, I do get the distinct feeling he's working with limited resources and not even he may be able to save Wigan from relegation this season.

With a fully fit squad I'd probably give them a fighting chance, as I think they have enough quality and tenacity within the team to get them out of trouble. But with Henri Camera injured, Heskey misfiring and a serious lack of confidence running through the squad, I do fear the end of their Premiership existence is coming.

I've got this nagging suspicion that West Ham will eventually put some kind of run together to lift themselves out of trouble and the final relegation shake-up will come down to four teams - Watford and Charlton who I think are certainties for the drop, and then Sheffield United and Wigan who will scrap it out to avoid the final doomed slot at the foot of the table.

Unfortunately for Wigan, Sheffield United seem to have the impetus as well as a point's head start. They've also brought in some quality players in the transfer window and I feel overall have enough in their locker to see of Wigan and survive their first season in the top flight. Only time will tell though, and you can never say that Wigan are predictable.

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