WIGAN ROBIN PARK (Robin Park Arena)

After the excesses of last week, today I wanted to stay within an hour or so of home. A trip to Lancashire fitted the bill perfectly.

Wigan Robin Park, who have only existed since 2005, were hosting Daisy Hill (which is a village around 4 miles from Bolton) in a North West Counties League Division One game. This had the makings of a decent game as, at the beginning of play, Wigan were joint top of the table after 3 straight wins and Daisy Hill were making good progress with 1 defeat in their last 5 games.

The only doubt in my mind was regards the ground where Wigan play their homes games - the Robin Park Arena. It is an athletics stadium, in the shadow of Wigan Athletic's ground. I'm not a fan a watching football in these type of venues as that means you are well away from the action.

My worst fears were confirmed upon arrival at the ground, but the small compensation was that it was quite a large stand, so if you went towards the back rows, or even stood in the refreshment area, the views were quite reasonable.

It would've been rude not to!

After paying my admission at the front desk and purchasing the excellent programme (where I was impressed by the use of the word 'mingebag' in one of the articles) it was then off to seek out another thing Wigan is famous for - pies! I'm happy to report the one I sampled today was absolutely spiffing and most welcome on a chilly afternoon.

The game lived up to my pre-match predication as Wigan edged out their visitors by the odd goal in three.

The homesters took the lead after 10 minutes when the unmarked Sean Judge headed home a corner. Daisy Hill made most of the running but they never really troubled the Wigan goalkeeper. The Robins created the better chances and went further in front on 40 minutes through a quickly taken free kick, Phil Howard rolling the ball into the empty net whilst the Daisy Hill goalkeeper was still organising the wall. These free-kicks are controversial if you are on the receiving end, and Daisy Hill were fuming, but if you are the attacking side then you have to have the advantage. The referee was happy to let the goal stand, despite the Daisy Hill protestations.

This sense of perceived injustice served to galvanise the visitors in the second period and they dominated the possession. They were back in the game after 58 minutes when Craig Xeureb went through one-on-one, but a last ditch tackle stopped him scoring. From the resulting corner the ball dropped to Xeureb on the edge of the box and he curled a delightful shot into the top corner.

Despite dominating the remainder of the game, Daisy Hill couldn't force and equaliser and Wigan held on to take the points and remain (joint) top of the table.

The Robin Arena is in the shadow of Wigan Athletic's ground

Note the subs, quite literally on the bench!

Shaun Judge wheels away after giving Wigan the lead

Had the Linesman sampled too many Wigan delicacies?

Saturday 12th November 2011
North West Counties League Division One
Wigan Robin Park 2-1 Daisy Hill
Attendance: 56

No comments:

Post a Comment