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Martinez targets FA Cup boost

Roberto Martinez insists Wigan's FA Cup clash with Huddersfield can be a launchpad for their Premier League survival.

Last Updated: 17/02/13 at 15:12 Post Comment

Roberto Martinez: Up for the cup

Roberto Martinez: Up for the cup

Martinez's side take on Huddersfield in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Sunday at a time when they sit second bottom of the Premier League with 12 games to go and three points from safety.

For the clash with the Terriers, who have been struggling in the Championship, Martinez has indicated he is likely to hand another opportunity to some fringe players that have come into the side for previous cup games.

But he is keen to stress that, having reached this stage of the competition for the first time since 1987, Wigan are very much ready to give their all in the match at the John Smith's Stadium.

"We are not taking the opportunity of being involved in the fifth round of this cup competition lightly, and also we are taking this as a game to help us find our best form in the league," Martinez said.

"I don't think both competitions should pull against each other. It is the opposite - they both should help the team in the same direction.

"The players are desperate to enjoy their challenge, and we would like to include the FA Cup in this vital group of games where we are looking to finish the season on a high."

Huddersfield go into the contest with a new man in charge having sacked manager Simon Grayson, who last season guided them to promotion from League One, in January and then earlier this week confirmed Mark Robins as his successor.

Martinez expects Robins' appointment to give an additional boost to a team he had already identified as being dangerous opponents.

"I think Mark Robins will bring a great feel-good factor to the place, and we have been very impressed with Huddersfield Town so far," Martinez said.

"I have seen a few games. In the previous round it was two very good performances against a very good Leicester side (the teams drew 1-1 at Huddersfield, who then won the replay 2-1).

"Then there was the game against Crystal Palace at home (a 1-0 league win). I think what they are is a very dynamic team. They work extremely hard, they have a very good combination up front and they have players who can go past you with ease in one v one situations.

"At their own place, they are going to be a very tough team to play against - as you would expect at this stage of this competition.

"We are well aware of their threats and quality, but we need to look at ourselves and show we are as good as we can be on the day."

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S

terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

rodger's gusset
Arsenal interest in Sterling

T

he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

ricky villa
Hodgson: Barkley was brilliant

N

o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

badwolf
Townsend: I've silenced critics

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