Latics leave Pool in drop zone

Wigan moved out of the Premier League relegation zone and pushed Blackpool into it with a comfortable 3-1 victory at Bloomfield Road.

Last Updated: 16/04/11 at 17:24 Post Comment

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Rodallega: Celebrates his opener

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Hugo Rodallega put the visitors ahead early on by nutmegging Matt Gilks and Charles N'Zogbia made it 2-0 in first-half stoppage time.

Mohamed Diame sent in the third via a deflection off Neal Eardley midway through the second period, rendering DJ Campbell's late reply for the Seasiders a mere consolation.

The result means the Latics, who started the day bottom of the table, leapfrogged Blackpool into 17th place.

Roared on by their vociferous fans, it was Wigan who looked more up for the battle from the off and within three minutes they had taken the lead.

Blackpool defender Craig Cathcart slipped as N'Zogbia fed the ball through to Rodallega, who coolly slotted it through Gilks' legs and into the net for his eighth goal of the season.

Rodallega then headed a long ball over the bar, before a cross-cum-shot from Eardley brought a save out of Ali Al Habsi at the other end.

Gilks - back in the side for the first time since breaking his kneecap in November - punched away a ball into the box from Ben Watson as the visitors continued to press.

The Seasiders tried to hit back and won a series of corners, but struggled to fashion a real effort on goal.

Wigan were soon back on the front foot with N'Zogbia proving a particular threat, and the Frenchman struck into the side netting towards the end of the first half.

Moments later he doubled the Latics' advantage, collecting the ball after Charlie Adam had been dispossessed by Diame, breaking into the box and finishing past Gilks.

Wigan picked up where they left off after the restart, with Watson sending a low drive wide and Rodallega flashing an effort across the face of goal.

After seeing Adam strike a free-kick into the Latics wall, Blackpool boss Ian Holloway needed no further prompting and made a triple substitution, bringing on Matt Phillips, James Beattie and Jason Puncheon for Elliot Grandin, Gary Taylor-Fletcher and Luke Varney.

N'Zogbia was on the attack again soon after, though, and produced a shot that stung Gilks' palms.

Diame was next to try his luck with an effort that Gilks collected comfortably, but moments later the outcome was different.

Diame received the ball from Rodallega, turned and hit a shot that deceived Gilks by deflecting off Eardley on its way towards goal.

The game seemed up for the Seasiders and Wigan manager Roberto Martinez brought off N'Zogbia and Diame - both to great applause from the Wigan faithful - for Conor Sammon and Jordi Gomez.

But there was still life in the hosts and with seven minutes remaining, Campbell made it 3-1, sliding in to convert Phillips' cross after a free-kick had come off the wall.

Soon after, Phillips struck a low effort, but Al Habsi smothered it before the final whistle went to confirm a vital win for the Latics.

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