I’m going to try something a little bit different for this match report, such is my anger at witnessing what I’ve just seen.
Quite simply we were outplayed at Wigan and deserved to lose heavily. I have no complaints, certainly with regard to Wigan anyway. Hats off to them.
However what I can complain about is the sheer lack of anything from our players. They’ve looked unbeatable in recent weeks, but today was a whole different story. It looked as though they’d all been out on the drink last night and had forgot who each other was. There was absolutely nothing today to give them credit for.
Do I feel bad about being so harsh on the players who have got us to Europe? Not one bit. They were awful and deserve the bulk of the flack for this defeat. People will cry tactics in an attempt to sound knowledgeable, but the fact is that the best tactics in the world would have been undone by the incompetence of our own players to today.
Two goals from Victor Moses gave Wigan an early lead before further strikes from Shaun Maloney and Franco Di Santo left the home side 4-0 up at half-time. It was game over then although I will give the players at least some credit for trying in the second half, even though that is the minimum I expect!
So what now? Chelsea away where I would hope we put on a better show than we did today. We’ve had a stunning season and this result shouldn’t detract from that, but if plaudits are going to be dished out and received by players and manager then they should also be prepared for criticism when it is deserved. And today it is deserved!
It’s more than likely going to be the end of our Champions League dream, even though I never thought we’d make it anyway. Still stranger things have happened and there is still a lot of football to be played so you never know.
Based on today though I wouldn’t get any hopes up!
Wigan: Ali Al Habsi, Antolin Alcaraz, Emmerson Boyce, Gary Caldwell, Maynor Figueroa, Shaun Maloney, James McCarthy, James McArthur, Victor Moses, Jean Beausejour, Franco Di Santo
Subs: Mike Pollitt, Albert Crusat, Jordi Gomez, Connor Sammon, David Jones, Hugo Rodallega, Mohamed Diame
Newcastle: Tim Krul, Danny Simpson, Mike Williamson, Fabricio Coloccini, Davide Santon, Cheik Tiote, Jonas Gutierrez, Yohan Cabaye, Hatem Ben Arfa, Papiss Cisse, Demba Ba
Subs: Rob Elliot, James Perch, Shane Ferguson, Ryan Taylor, Dan Gosling, Shola Ameobi, Leon Best