Match Preview: Wigan v Blackpool
14th August 2010
In a few of my previous match previews, I've kept it simple, knowing that my words couldn't possibly do the occasion justice. This is another one of those occasions.
How can you possibly put into words what it's going to mean to everyone when the Seasiders take to the field tomorrow to compete in their first ever Premier League game?
Instead, I shall simply remark that it's going to be bloody nice to finally have some football to watch after a bizarre summer (thus far) at BFC. And regardless of the results over the coming months, as Brendan says on Coach Trip, I'm just going to 'Sit back, relax and enjoy the ride'.
But what hope of getting a result tomorrow afternoon at the DW? Well, we beat Wigan 4-1 last time out, albeit at home, but our squad has changed a helluva lot since then all told. Indeed, given this day and age, we're in the bizarre position of going to a game without really knowing that much about our new signings, and I for one, am looking forward to seeing them play.
With so many new signings (and who thought we'd be saying that at the start of the week?!), you have to worry about the team gelling. Starting the season on the road when we were meant to start at home isn't ideal either, but the 'Pool will be backed by nearly 4,500 fans and you'd certainly not rule out an away win for the boys in tangerine to start the season. All told though, you'd be happy enough with a point, wouldn't you?
And even if we don't get a result, then at least...
BLACKPOOL ARE BACK, BLACKPOOL ARE BACK, HELLO HELLO!
Latics boss Roberto Martinez is not taking tomorrow's game lightly, knowing just how much of a threat the Seasiders pose:
'The worst time to play them is the first game.
'You have been dreaming about the Premier League and have no fear.
'Ian will not change the way they play. They will attack and that will surprise people.
'They go at opponents instead of sitting back. Most teams that come up do not do that.'
Wigan Team News:
Gary Caldwell is suspended. Bar that, Martinez has a full squad to select from.
Player to watch: Mauro Boselli
The Argentine international forward is set to make his debut for the Latics, and comes with a big reputation despite missing out on Diego Maradona's World Cup squad.
Blackpool Team News:
Keith Southern and Billy Clarke are the obvious absentees, otherwise Ian Holloway has a full squad to choose from. Which of the new signings will feature is unclear as of yet.
Player to watch: Charlie Adam
The biggest stage in the world awaits for the man who many are tipping to be the key to 'Pool's survival hopes.
Match Facts & Stats
Tomorrow's game will be the first meeting between the two sides in a top flight fixture.
Wigan had the worst defence in the division last season, conceding 79 goals.
Wigan have only one one of their last seven Premier League games.
Blackpool's last away win in the top flight came against Newcastle in August 1970.
Mark Halsey returns to Premier League duty after beating cancer.
Away at Arsenal next Saturday. But you knew that already, didn't you?