Chelsea v Wigan
Saturday 28 February 2009,
Chelsea defeated in-form Aston Villa 1-0 away in their last league encounter, ending a run of two league matches without a win.
In their last five matches, Chelsea have won three (vs Aston Villa, Middlesbrough and Stoke City), drawn one (vs Hull), and lost one (vs Liverpool), earning themselves ten points from the fifteen on offer.
The Blues scored five goals and conceded three in these matches, as they currently sit back in 3rd place in the league, three points behind 2nd placed Liverpool and one point ahead of 4th placed Aston Villa.
Chelsea will be without Joe Cole (knee) and Michael Essien (knee), although Ricardo Carvalho may return from his hamstring injury for this match.
Chelsea will also be without Jose Bosingwa for this match, as he serves a one match suspension due to yellow card accumulation.
Wigan Athletic drew 0-0 away against Middlesbrough in their last league match, earning their fourth successive league draw and making a run of six matches without a league win.
In their last five matches, Wigan have won none, drawn four (v Middlesbrough, Fulham, Aston Villa and Liverpool) and lost one (v Manchester City), gaining four points from the fifteen available.
The Latics scored one goal and conceded two in these matches, as they currently sit 7th in the league, six points behind 6th placed Everton and two points ahead of 8th placed Fulham.
Wigan Athletic will be without Mido (groin) and Antonio Valencia (hamstring) for this match.
Chelsea defeated Wigan 1-0 away at JJB Stadium earlier in the season, with the two sides sharing a 1-1 draw in last year’s corresponding fixture.
It still remains to be seen how Chelsea will perform under new manager Guus Hiddink; however with two important recent wins against two big clubs – Aston Villa and Juventus – it shows a promising potential for the Blues and their chances to revitalise their season and secure a Champions League spot for next season.
The Blues will likely be on a high after their important midweek win, whilst Wigan may be frustrated with their recent string of draws and lack of goal-scoring ability.
With the advantage of the home crowd also behind them, Chelsea will go into this match as strong favourites for victory. Whilst a Wigan win looks extremely unlikely, the best that the Latics could probably hope for is that their defence – which has seen Wigan go three straight matches without conceding a goal – could try to dig their heels in at Stamford Bridge and grind out a goalless draw.
Read all the weekend previews here.