International breaks continue to disrupt Wigan

Wigan Athletic suffered another defeat after a round of international fixtures when they lost 3-0 to Liverpool last Saturday. The club’s record after internationals tells a sorry story; so far this season they have lost to Manchester United, Swansea and Liverpool.

International breaks continue to disrupt Wigan

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November 22nd, 2012

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Wigan boss Roberto Martinez commented after the game that international fixtures meant “we couldn’t be ourselves” at Anfield. Martinez believes the international break needs to be revisited in order to get the right balance between international and club fixtures – otherwise the Premier League will suffer.

Martinez has stated that we should be looking after our top players much better. He said, “We want top football being played week in, week out and to do that we need to allow the players to recover and to cope with the demands and that’s something the top organisations need to look into.”

He has requested that the Premier League fixtures are put back a day to give the players more time to recover. This would seem a sensible request, given the distances that many of the international players have to travel to play for their home nations. Forty-eight hours before a game is insufficient time to recover for many of the Wigan players who have to travel long distances; often representing countries in Central or South America.

Once upon a time Latics didn’t have internationals in their line-up but now most of the squad is committed to playing for their countries all over the world. It is fair to say that many of the bigger clubs also have to contend with international duties, but they have much greater strength in depth and they can afford to rotate their players more often than Wigan. With long-term injuries to Antolin Alcaraz, James McArthur and now Ben Watson the playing squad is looking stretched and it is likely that the manager will have to start some of the younger fringe players such as Ryo Miyaichi, Fraser Fyvie and Callum McManaman.

On a positive note, Wigan’s supporters will be relieved that there are no more international fixtures until February next year.

Ian Aspinall

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