By Steve Sutcliffe | In Match Reports - Away Games
Wigan overcame Manchester City in fiercely contested derby at the JJB Stadium which saw yet another controversial penalty.
Following Manchester United’s dubious penalty on Saturday, City’s Javier Garrido was harshly penalised by referee Steve Bennett when he came together in the area with Wilson Palacios.
Amr Zaki calmly scored the penalty to secure all three points for the home side as they moved up to 10th position. Luis Antonio Valencia had given Wigan the lead with a fine strike, before Vincent Kompany equalised soon after.
Manchester City manager Mark Hughes who had admitted to being embarrassed by the midweek Carling Cup defeat at Brighton recalled big guns Micah Richards, Robinho and Shaun Wright Phillips while Garrido and Hart also returned. While Wigan boss Steve Bruce made two changes to the side which won 4-1 at Ipswich with Figueroa and Melchiot replacing Kilbane and Scharner.
And it was the home side that edged ahead in the 16th minute when City only partially cleared a weak free kick. The ball fell to Valencia 10 yards outside the box and the Ecuador winger produced a stunning strike to leave City keeper Hart with no chance.
City were soon level. Wigan ignored a warning almost immediately from the restart when Robinho ran through the home defence and shot wide and 5 minutes later following good work from Wright-Phillips on the right, Palacios failed to deal with Elano’s free-kick, leaving Kompany to knock in a simple volley.
And so it was left to another highly debatable penalty decision to change the course of the match and ultimately decide the result.
Garrido clashed with Palacios but there appeared to be only limited contact and certainly not enough to justify the Honduran’s theatrical plummet to the deck.
Zaki who impressed all afternoon stepped forward and calmly slotted the ball over the diving Hart to score his fifth Premier League goal this season.
City piled on the pressure after the break with the Brazilian Elano almost equalising on the hour with a ferocious drive dipping just wide.
Ireland then fluffed a one-on-one and Wright-Phillips was denied after a great save from the impressive Chris Kirkland. City continued to stream forward and had a seemingly legitmate penalty claim turned down as Wright-Phillips was bundled over in the box by Titus Bramble.
With City’s efforts being matched by Wigan players battling for every second ball, it just wasn’t to be there day and it was left to Steve Bruce and his players to celebrate at the final whistle.
Wigan: Kirkland, Melchiot, Bramble, Boyce, Figueroa, Valencia, Palacios, Cattermole (Brown 53), Kapo, Heskey, Zaki.
Subs Not Used: Pollitt, Scharner, Kilbane, De Ridder, Camara, Koumas.
Booked: Valencia, Brown, Melchiot.
Goals: Valencia 16, Zaki 34 pen.
Man City: Hart, Zabaleta, Richards, Dunne, Garrido, Kompany (Fernandes 90), Elano (Sturridge 84), Wright-Phillips, Ireland, Robinho, Jo (Evans 74).
Subs Not Used: Schmeichel, Michael Ball, Ben-Haim, Hamann.
Booked: Kompany, Robinho, Richards.