Bristol Rovers v Wigan Athletic Match Preview

By Simon Gray

Bristol Rovers host promotion-chasing Wigan Athletic in the midweek match hoping to record their first win over the Latics since 1998.

Rovers go into the game in 12th place and face 3rd place Wigan, who have three games in hand on Shrewsbury and Blackburn above them. Rovers boss Darrell Clarke has said his side are in for a tough game against ‘the best side in the league’.

“For me, they are the best team in the League. They are in the quarter-final of the Emirates FA Cup and Paul Cook has done a fantastic job there,” Clarke told the club’s website.

“It’s all right saying that they have the best players, but you still have to get results and Paul has done fantastic to get them where they are.”

“When you come up against a team that have beaten Manchester City, you know that it’s going to be a tough test, but I know our fans will be right up for the game.”

Rovers could be without Ollie Clarke once again after the midfielder missed the weekend draw with Scunthorpe. Daniel Leadbitter is also out of the game, he is still recovering from a hamstring injury.

Wigan go into the game in fine form, having reached the Quarter Final of the FA Cup and have won six of their last eight games in all competitions.

Manager Paul Cook has spoken of his side’s game management and admits that the FA Cup run may have caused his side more injury problems than normal.

“We’ve done our best to manage the situation, and we’ve come out of it well,” Cook told Wigan today.

“We’re at full strength again, and that’s great credit to all the medical staff.

“Everyone’s fit again and available, and I couldn’t be happier about that.

“That’s why Saturday’s win was so huge for us – because we were missing a few players, and we just wanted to get the win.

“We’ve everyone back now, the squad’s on a real high, there’s a real feel-good factor, which is hugely important.”

Wigan go into the game with Nick Powell, Sam Morsy, Nathan Byrne all back in contention and raring to go.

Stats

The reverse fixture ended in a 3-0 Wigan win at the DW Stadium.

Rovers have not beaten Wigan in their last 6 meetings.

This will be the 26th meeting between the two sides, Rovers and Wigan have both won 10 each with there being 5 draws.

21, Bristol Rovers fan for as long as i can remember. Highlight has to be to 06/07 Play Off win. Seen Rovers at 43/92 clubs in England and counting.

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