Wigan Athletic v Everton: Match Preview


Wigan Athletic v Everton
Barclays Premier League
DW Stadium
Saturday, February 4; 15:00


Team News

Midfielder Mohamed Diame is available again for Wigan Athletic after returning from the Africa Cup of Nations.

Hugo Rodallega and David Jones are in line for starts, but Antolin Alcaraz’s groin injury could keep him out.

Deadline day signing’s Nikica Jelavic and Steven Pienaar could both start for Everton, but a host of injuries, to the likes of Phil Jagielka and Jack Rodwell, leaves David Moyes’ squad on the thin side.

Moyes hopes deadline day duo shine

Everton manager David Moyes is expecting big things from his new signings during the final part of the season.

Often frugal during the transfer window, Moyes brought four new additions in January, with Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic the latest to join the Goodison Park ranks.

Protests from supporters, as well as falling attendances had contributed to a difficult start to the season, with The Toffees in 10th, buy Moyes hopes the new signings can be the catalyst for a return of the good times on Merseyside.

“I needed a lift,” said Moyes.

“I felt that I was letting people down. I felt I was disappointing the supporters with how we have been playing and the selections that I was putting out.

“I had tried every selection possible but we have done something about it. We have got more confidence and it has been up to me to lift the players.

“What the last few days have shown me is that our belief has not left the building. We have got a spring in our step again.

“We have got to build on the win over Manchester City with more performances like that.”

The plight if their weekend opponents Wigan however, is far more perilous, with The Latics rock bottom of the Premier League and without a home league win since August.

However, according to manager Roberto Martinez, whose side beat the drop last season on the final day of the campaign, Wigan can be optimistic.

"The position we are in is an easier position than anyone else," said Martinez.

"We've played Spurs and Manchester City twice so we've only got two games left against top-four sides.

"We have nothing to lose from now on. We feel strongly that we control our own destiny, even though we are bottom.

"We have the quality and the experience to survive."

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