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PREVIEW: LATICS V ARSENAL

PUBLISHED

00:55 12th April 2014

by Stewart Frodsham

We look ahead to today's semi-final at Wembley

Wigan Athletic v Arsenal
FA Cup with Budweiser, Semi-Final
Saturday 12 April 2014, kick off 5.07pm
Wembley Stadium

Match Preview

Wigan Athletic return to Wembley for the fourth time in a year this Saturday as their defence of their FA Cup crown continues against Arsenal.  In a sun-baked Mesnes Park Pavilion this week, Uwe Rosler declared the game a ‘win win’ fixture for his team for whom this will be the 55th game of the season, not counting the hour played against Sheffield Wednesday in December in the abandoned fixture.

The pressure is firmly on Saturday’s opponents who are left with a battle to take fourth position in the Barclays Premier League table after their 3-0 defeat to Everton on Sunday. Latics went in to last season’s semi-final as favourites, but this year they are undeniably underdogs, a role which the manager is relishing.

Scott Carson looks set to continue in goal having played in the quarter-final victory over Manchester City and also in Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat to Millwall.  Shaun Maloney, a semi-final scorer last year, was singled out for praise by his manager after the Millwall game and could have done enough to retain that starting position, especially given Martyn Waghorn’s ineligibility.  A number of the players rested on Tuesday evening are likely to return, including Jordi Gomez and James Perch to name two.

Chris McCann and Ben Watson are the only two players definitely ruled out of the fixture.

Arsenal will give fitness tests to three players before the, midfielders Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (groin) and Tomas Rosicky (thigh) face checks as does full-back Kieran Gibbs (ankle) before the tie.

Head to Head

Wigan Athletic’s overall head to head against the Gunners doesn’t make good reading.  Latics have recorded just three wins to Arsenal 15.  [Click here] for our full head to head guide.

Form Guide

Wigan Athletic (P6, W2, D2, L2) 
Goals Scored: 6 Conceded: 6 Goal Difference: 0

Tue 08 Apr – Championship – Millwall (H) – L0-1
Sat 05 Apr – Championship – Leeds (H) – W1-0
Tue 01 Apr – Championship – Leicester (H) – D2-2
Sat 29 Mar – Championship – Bolton (A) – D1-1
Tue 25 Mar – Championship – QPR (A) – L1-0
Sat 22 Mar – Championship – Watford (H) – W2-1

Arsenal (P6, W1, D3, L2)
Goals Scored: 5 Conceded: 13 Goal Difference: -8

Sun 06 Apr – Premier League – Everton (A) – L3-0
Sat 29 Apr – Premier League – Man City (H) – D1-1
Tue 24 Mar – Premier League – Swansea (H) – D2-2
Sat 22 Mar – Premier League – Chelsea (A) – L6-0
Sun 16 Mar – Premier League – Tottenham (A) – W0-1
Tue 11 Mar – Championship League – Bayern Munich (A) D1-1

Last Line up in the Cup

Wigan Athletic (v Man City [A] W1-2): S Carson yellow card, I Ramis, J Perch, C McCann (L Barnett yellow card, 45), E Boyce, S Crainey, J Gomez, J McArthur, C McManaman (J McClean, 58), J McEachran (R Espinoza yellow card, 66), M Fortune.
Subs not used: T Rogne, N Maynard, M Holgersson, A Al Habsi.

Arsenal (v Everton [H] W4-1): L Fabianski, T Vermaelen, P Mertesacker, B Sagna, K Gibbs (C Jenkinson, 88), M Flamini yellow card, S Cazorla, M Ozil, A Oxlade-Chamberlain (T Rosicky, 78), M Arteta, Y Sanogo (O Giroud yellow card, 61).
Subs not used: L Podolski, E Viviano, R Miyaichi, S Gnabry.

Match Officials

Referee Michael Oliver
Assistant Referees Stuart Burt & Darren England
Fourth Official Craig Pawson
Reserve Assistant Referee John Brooks
Assessor Peter Jones

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