Latics’ late show rescues a point – Cambridge United 2 Wigan Athletic 2

  • Wigan Athletic came back from two goals down to secure a point at the Abbey Stadium.
  • Despite dominating the first half Latics went behind when Joe Ironside was allowed to turn in the box and volley home on 44 minutes.
  • The hosts increased their lead on 53 minutes when Adam May fired into the bottom corner from the edge of the box.
  • With six minutes of normal time remaining Latics rallied and Will Keane fired home on 84 minutes and Callum Lang finished from close range on 86 minutes.
  • Latics drop to fourth place in the table but are only two points off the top. Cambridge are in 15th place.

Leam Richardson made five changes from the side which defeated Solihull in the FA cup with Keane, Ben Amos, Jack Whatmough, Curtis Tilt and James McClean returning. Tendayi Darikwa was suspended and Charlie Wyke missed out due to illness.

Latics pressed forward from the kick off and went close when McClean’s excellent delivery to the back post was nearly converted by Whatmough.

The visitors forced a series of corners and threatened from crosses and from one cross Tom Pearce found Keane who finished well but his effort was disallowed for offside.

Latics continued to dominate proceedings but couldn’t make the breakthrough. 

Just after the half hour the visitors were denied by a super save from Cambridge keeper Dimi Mitov. From Pearce’s cross the ball was diverted by Lang and seemed destined for the bottom corner but Mitov got down superbly to his left to deny him.

At the other end the hosts first strike on goal by George Williams was well saved by Amos low down to his left.

But with their second attempt on goal they went ahead on 44 minutes when Ironside was allowed time to bring the ball down inside the box and finish from eight yards out.

Latics started the second-half strongly but suffered a sucker punch when Ironside set up May on the edge of the box and the midfielder fired into the corner of the net.

Latics now had a mountain to climb and they struggled to regain their early cohesion. 

They were dominating possession but couldn’t penetrate the Cambridge defence until with six minutes remaining they finally made the vital breakthrough. 

Keane turned on the edge of the area and fired decisively into the corner of the Cambridge net.

The visitors were in the ascendancy and quickly drew level when Power’s cross from the right found Lang at close range who finished past Mitov.

Latics pushed for the winner and were unlucky when another Lang effort from close range was disallowed for offside. 

Overall it had been an erratic display by Latics but they had shown great character and commitment to retrieve a point from a losing position.

Manager Richardson was critical of Latics’ lapses but praised the character of his team.

“At half time, it was more of the same, and two goals in our box probably were their only threat, but we’ve got to respect teams when they play like that because they are good at it. You’ve got to respect that and defend resolutely and properly but fair credit to the lads, they kept going until the end and I thought we might have nicked it as well.

“You’re got to give the lads credit because they were 2-0 down on the road again and they never gave up. I thought we knocked on the door long enough to get a goal and I thought we deserved the result.’

About ianhaspinall

Communications specialist, Wigan Athletic fan & blogger, interested in music, arts & culture.
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