Frustration setting in

Posted by Ned Brown

Another opportunity squandered as Latics failed to convert a string of chances to put this game beyond Harry Redknapp’s energized but sloppy troops last Saturday in the 2-2 draw with QPR. Wigan were still missing seven senior players against a team with a new manager in desperate circumstances, but frustration is starting to set in as the season shapes closer to another relegation battle than a than a cozy mid-table finish.

The Good:

James McCarthy’s finishing — he was unlucky not to score a third goal. He confirmed what we already knew: the lad has everything; Ronnie Stam put in another good display down the right; The team’s response after a poor first half was once again strong and resulted in an equaliser, although it probably should have resulted in two or three more goals as well.

The Bad:

The result and the scrappy nature of the team’s play at times. The worrying lack of composure from those charged with putting the ball in the back of the net. Arouna Koné was poor, and desperately needs a goal. Mauro Boselli came on far too late — this game would have suited him as Latics had a lot of possession in the opposition’s box. When Shaun Maloney came on, he looked out of place in a left-midfield role instead of around the box where his incision was needed.

Player Ratings:

Ali Al-Habsi: 6 — Made a couple great saves and could not be blamed for any of the goals.

Emmerson Boyce: 7.5 — Once again a strong performer on the right of the back three.

Adrian Lopez: 6 — Ryan Nelsen escaped his mark on the first QPR goal and a sloppy pass from the Spaniard led to their second. He was very good otherwise, but . . . .

David Jones: 7 — Called upon to fill the left centre-half position and did his best. Got forward occasionally too, deserves credit.

Jean Beausejour: 6 — Despite providing the cross for the second goal, this was not one of his stronger performances.

Ronnie Stam: 7.5 — Full of running and endeavour down the right. May be one to keep his place when all the injured players return to the squad.

James McArthur: 6 — OK on the ball, but not as dominant as usual.

James McCarthy: 9 — Excellent. Drove the team forward in the second half. Capable of scoring regularly — sadly will end up at one of the big clubs if he does.

Jordi Gomez: 6.5 — Poor first half, faded in and out of second, but looked to be the only attacking player with the composure to score. Latics’ biggest threat and was unlucky to hit the crossbar.

Franco Di Santo: 6.5 — Some good running with the ball, was fouled a lot, but didn’t ever look like scoring.

Arouna Kone: 5 — His touch let him down on numerous occasions, and he failed to get his shot off when through in the second half. Needs a goal.

Subs:

Shaun Maloney: N/A — Brought on in a strange left midfield role and looked a little off the pace. Still, if he made it through without injury setback.

Mauro Boselli: N/A -- Wish he'd been brought on sooner than the 85th minute.

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