Latics upset the City slickers again – Wigan Athletic 1 Manchester City 0

Will Grigg Wigan Athletic

Will Grigg scored his seventh FA Cup goal of the season

Manchester City must be sick of the sight of their nemesis Wigan Athletic. The Latics have now incredibly beaten City on three successive occasions in the FA Cup, first winning the trophy in the final in 2013, then quarter-final in 2014 and now in the fifth-round in 2018.

Pep Guardiola’s expensively assembled outfit were expected to sweep aside League One Latics but Paul Cook’s men were having none of it and they dug deep to secure another memorable victory.

Will Grigg delivered the knock out blow with a superb solo goal with 11 minutes remaining and Latics held on to face Southampton at home in the quarter-final.

City started as massive favourites in the game and were expected to progress towards the quadruple, but after a failure to breakthrough in the first half, matters got worse for them when Fabian Delph was dismissed on the stroke of half-time for a dangerous challenge on Max Power.

Even with 10-men City dominated possession and created numerous goalscoring opportunities but they failed to capitalise and when Grigg got his only chance of the second half he took it superbly to send the Latics’ fans into raptures.

Paul Cook made three changes to the team that had lost at home to Blackpool with Callum Elder, David Perkins and Gary Roberts all starting.

City inevitably dominated possession from the kick off with Sergio Aguero soon heading just over the crossbar and Ilkay Gündogan forcing a good save from Christian Walton.

But Latics responded when Grigg raced past John Stones before firing into the side netting.

Nick Powell was then denied an opportunity to score by a good challenge in the area as Latics grew into the game.

But Powell had to be withdrawn after 27 minutes due to injury and was replaced by on-loan Swansea midfielder Jay Fulton.

Fernandinho blazed over from close range and Danilo had a long range effort fly wide of the target as City upped the pressure.

Walton then produced a superb full length save to deny Aguero as City went in search of the opening goal.

Controversially City were reduced to 10 men just before half-time when Delph made a reckless challenge on Max Power. Referee Anthony Taylor initially got out a yellow card but after apparently consulting with his assistants he changed his mind to give a red.

In the aftermath there were some harsh words exchanged between Aguero and Paul Cook and the complaints from the City players and manager continued into the tunnel.

Early in the second half Danilo threatened for City but he was denied by Chey Dunkley who blocked his effort. City continued to dominate the ball but Latics held firm.

Guardiola introduced Kevin De Bruyne on 65 minutes in an attempt to make the breakthrough.

But City were stunned on 79 minutes when Grigg outstripped two defenders, forced his way into the box before unleashing a low drive into the bottom right hand corner past Claudio Bravo.

The DW Stadium erupted with delight and chants of ‘Will Grigg’s on fire’ echoed all around. Could Latics pull off another remarkable giant killing?

City upped the pressure but Latics defended superbly. Latics may have rode their luck a little but they held on to achieve a magnificent third successive FA Cup victory against City.

About ianhaspinall

Communications specialist, Wigan Athletic fan & blogger, interested in music, arts & culture.
This entry was posted in FA Cup, Manchester City, Wigan Athletic, Will Grigg and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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