Premier League preview: Stoke v Wigan
By Football News
Wigan will aim to take advantage of Stoke's poor form as they attempt to kick-start yet another late-season run to avoid relegation.
With five defeats in their past seven matches, Wigan are second bottom on the English Premier League table with just 19 points from 23 games ahead of their trip to Stoke on Tuesday.
Stoke are 10th in the standings, nine spots ahead of Wigan, but having lost their past three games they present a great opportunity for the latter to claim a much-needed victory.
Spanish midfielder Jordi Gomez could be the key play for Wigan if he can translate his FA Cup form into the Premier League.
Gomez has scored in Wigan's 1-0 triumphs over Bournemouth and Macclesfield Town as moved into the fifth round of the FA Cup, making it five goals for the season across all competitions.
Wigan have only scored 25 goals in the Premier League this season, the fifth-worst record in England's top flight, but manager Roberto Martinez could at least be happy that his team have shared them around.
Gomez and another six players have scored at least two goals for Wigan in the Premier League, with Ivorian striker Arouna Kone the most prolific marksman, having hit the back of the net six times.
Somewhat surprisingly, Stoke may be an easy target for Kone and his teammates.
Stoke have conceded an average of 3.25 goals per game over their past four fixtures, in direct contrast to their usual defensive solidity under manager Tony Pulis, collecting just one draw in the same period.
Pulis will be glad to welcome back Irish defender Marc Wilson against Wigan having seen his side lose to Swansea (3-1), Chelsea (4-0) and Manchester City (3-0) in the past three games.
At the other end, Pulis may soon be without the services of Kenwyne Jones with Swansea reportedly interested in the 28-year-old striker.
While Jones has been behind Peter Crouch and Jonathan Walters in the pecking order this season at Stoke, the Trinidadian has scored three goals in the past month, more than any other player at the club.