As the compelling fight for Premier League survival continues, relegation prospects Stoke City, Sunderland and Norwich claimed maximum points in their respective fixtures last weekend.
But fellow battlers Wigan Athletic where left disheartened after a moral diminishing 2-0 defeat against West Ham United, and with games against Tottenham, West Brom, Swansea, Arsenal and Wigan to come, the Latics Premier League future is looking more and more bleak.
Roberto Martinez's side, although playing fluent attacking football, where caught flat at the back and dropped a crucial three points. Only a Manchester United win kept Aston Villa in their grasp, and although reaching the first FA Cup final in the clubs history, Martinez has claimed his sides final day match against Aston Villa has much higher importance to him and his side.
With three points separating Wigan and Villa from safety, and with only five matches to go, it is a real possibility that Premier League survival for both sides could rest on the result of that very fixture.
Since defeating Norwich 1-0 in March, Wigan have only scored one goal in three games, and are in need of Shaun Maloney and Callum McManaman to shoulder some of the goal scoring responsibility, which has fell to Ivorian forward Arouna Kone, with an impressive tally of 10 goals in the league this season.
Roberto Martinez has remained positive as of late, praising his team’s performances, but it remains clear that his side cannot afford another slip up.
Wigan’s next match against Tottenham at the DW Stadium is now pivotal to their survival ambitions. A win would place them above Aston Villa on goal difference, and most importantly out of the relegation zone, but a loss will see them slip deeper into the abyss.
Roberto Martinez side will need to perform at their paramount to defeat the inform Tottenham Hotspur, but they have history on their side. Finishes of 16th, 16th and 15th the past three seasons has seen Wigan Athletic become unyielding survival specialists.
Wigan have made a habit of coming alive in the spring months, and although we may never know what this absorbing relegation battle has in store for us, there is one thing we do know, Roberto Martinez and his side will not go down without a fight.
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