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  • Wigan 2-2 Stoke: Huth free-kick, Etherington, Cleverley scored

    Wigan Athletic and Stoke City played out an astonishing 2-2 draw in the Premier League at the DW Stadium on Saturday 04/12/2010, which still leaves the Latics in the bottom three.
    All the goals came within a frantic 20 minute spell midway through the first half.

    Robert Huth put Stoke ahead with a deflected free-kick only for Wigan to level with a deflected effort of their own through Antolin Alcaraz.

    Barely 60 seconds later Stoke had inched ahead through Matthew Etherington on his 200th Premier League appearance.

    But Wigan levelled the match again when Tom Cleverley's 20-yard strike found its way past Asmir Begovic.

    The visitors could have been ahead after 10 minutes. Huth's through ball to Ricardo Fuller fooled the Wigan defence but his shot was saved by the legs of Ali Al Habsi.

    Stoke took the lead after 17 minutes. Ricardo Fuller was fouled by Hendry Thomas 25 yards from goal.

    Huth stepped up to hammer his free-kick at the wall and it took a deflection, off Thomas, to send Ali Al-Habsi the wrong way in the Wigan goal.

    The Latics was almost all square after 25 minutes but Steve Gohouri's header from six yards out was wastefully directed wide with Begovic beaten.

    Just over 10 minutes later and Wigan were level after another deflected effort.

    This time Ben Watson's excellent free-kick from the left was met by the outstretched toe of Alcaraz eight yards out.

    He beat Danny Collins to the ball and his effort then deflected off the Stoke defender to beat Begovic at his near post.

    Within 60 seconds Stoke had regained the lead. Kenwyne Jones skipped delightfully past Maynor Figueroa's sliding challenge on the right touchline and made for goal.

    He paused and played to ball inside the penalty area to Ricardo Fuller. He got to the byline and crossed for Jonathan Walters at the near post.

    Walters could not make contact but the ball reached Etherington 10 yards out and he slide the ball under the advancing Al-Habsi.

    Thomas missed a wonderful opportunity to score after 37 minutes. N'Zogbia's cross from the left was missed by Begovic at his near post and Thomas had an open goal to score into from five yards. Yet, somehow, the midfielder contrived to side-foot his shot side of the left post for a glaring miss.

    Five minutes before the break and Wigan were level once more, and once more via a deflection.

    Charles N'Zogbia fed Cleverley in the inside left position. He let the ball run across his body then cut inside Huth.

    His shot from 20 yards took a wicked deflection off Danny Higginbottom to level the game at half-time.

    Mauro Boselli forced Begovic into a fine save at his near post shortly after the re-start while Stoke's Jon Walters sent a header wide from two yards when it appeared easier to score.

    Al Habsi produced a stunning one-handed save to keep out Jones's header within 10 minutes of the break.

    With time running out N'Zogbia nearly stole the points for Wigan when he crashed a drive off the far post after tricking his way past Huth.

    Stoke and Tony Pulis will be the happier of the two managers as they sit comfortably in the top ten while Roberto Martinez's side remain in the bottom three.
    Mark Applin / Eurosport


    Team Line-up:

    Wigan Athletic: Al Habsi, Gohouri, Alcaraz, Steven Caldwell, Figueroa, N'Zogbia, Watson, Diame, Thomas, Cleverley, Boselli Subs: Pollitt, Gomez, McArthur, Boyce, Stam, McManaman, Mustoe
    Stoke City: Begovic, Huth, Shawcross, Higginbotham, Collins, Walters, Whitehead, Delap, Etherington, Fuller, Jones Subs: Sorensen, Whelan, Gudjohnsen, Diao, Sanli, Faye, Shotton


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