Powell free kick edges 5 goal 'thriller'

Latics snatch late winner.


Obertan (34)
Gilbey (65)
Powell (90 +6)

Ward (29)
Forde (61)

There was very little quality in this one as the two bottom sides in the division showed exactly why they are where they are, but the important fact is that we came away with the points albeit in bizarre circumstances.  Results elsewhere mean that little has changed at the foot of the table but the win will be a much needed confidence boost as we go into a tricky Easter period behind the 8-ball.

The crowd was clearly one for a basement battle with the East Stand of The DW looking as empty as I think I’ve ever seen it for a league match since our promotion to the top flight saw home fans moved to that end.  Some fans were chastising the poor following from Rotherham but considering their position, away record and the goings on at the club I thought it was a good show from them, but quite evidently some of our fans had thrown the towel in and those that did turn up were quiet, uninterested and quick to pick on any mistakes from players in blue and white.  Had Millers skipper Danny Ward scored from Jakob Haugaards early error then I think the place may have erupted.

They may not have scored on that occasion but the already relegated visitors were ahead after half an hour when Joe Newell played Darnell Fisher into the area and he pulled the ball back for Ward to tap home from 10 yards.  Groans, boos and laughs from the home crowd greeted the goal but all that turned to cheers five minutes later when Gabriel Obertan took the ball from Ryan Colclough’s knock-down and calmly fired home after good work from Alex Gilbey on the right hand side.  A 1-1 score line at half time was probably a fair reflection of a pretty dull first half but an already flat atmosphere got even more flat at the news that Bristol City were ahead against Wolves and the gap to safety was now 9 points.

The second half was as slow as the first and followed pretty much the same pattern.  The visitors took the lead again through Anthony Forde’s long range effort just after the hour mark, an effort that Haugaard will no doubt feel he should have done better with, before Gilbey finished well from Obertan’s through ball four minutes later.  That looked like being all the action that the lowly 10,000 crowd would see but deep into injury time Rotherham goalkeeper Lewis Price inexplicably jumped onto the back of Nick Powell to spark a confrontation between the two that led to a stoppage in play once the incident had been spotted by the officials who firstly awarded a free kick to the right of goal before correctly moving the ball to the middle of goal from where Powell smashed home the 96th minute winner.  I’m not quite sure what happened between the two but I think it was meant in jest from Price and massively backfired. 

The reactions from the players were good to see throughout the game if we’re being honest.  Having gone behind not once but twice even to the worst side in the division we could have folded especially with the reactions from the crowd, myself included at times, which weren’t always encouraging but they battled on right to the end, got the win and they all celebrated the goal as you would expect them to celebrate a late late winner. I couldn’t help but feel deflated though given results elsewhere.  Again as with Tuesday night’s loss to Ipswich did, this result summed up our season.  We grab a 96th minute winning goal having twice come from behind and end up in a worse position than we were at kick off. We are still 7 points from safety but now only have 5 games in which to save ourselves.  Wigan Athletic just can’t do things easy can they?

Graham Barrow:I try and keep my emotions under control, but it's a good win for the club and it keeps things alive.


Cockney Latic Man of the Match: Gabriel Obertan
Referee: Scott Duncan
Attendance: 10.085
28 Haugaard 12 Price
26 Hanson 17 Fisher
20 Morgan 15 Ajayi
33 Burn 6 Wood
23 Warnock (C) 3 Mattock
7 Gilbey 7 Forde
16 MacDonald 33 Smallwood
6 Power 4 Vaulks
17 Jacobs 22 Newell
11 Obertan 10 Morris
27 Colclough 9 Ward (C)
35 Gilks 18 O'Donnell
3 Buxton 11 Taylor
8 Morsy 19 Clarke-Harris
12 Connolly 26 Belaid
25 Powell 27 Bray
31 Byrne 30 Purrington
39 Mandron 39 Yates

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