Wigan 0-1 Stoke: Tymon fires struggling Potters to victory
Josh Tymon’s goal just after the hour mark was enough to give Stoke a massive 1-0 victory at fellow Championship strugglers Wigan.
With the two sides having slipped to third and fourth bottom respectively after Tuesday’s matches, the stakes were high.
Stoke, ahead of their opponents on goal difference, were the first to threaten with striker Tymon firing wide with barely a minute gone.
At the other end, Max Power tried his luck from distance, with a shot that might have just touched the outside of the post on its way behind.
Former Stoke winger James McClean – being booed by the away end – saw a cross-shot fly inches past the far post, before he sent over a corner that was headed over by a towering Jack Whatmough.
A poor mistake by Whatmough then allowed Stoke to break through Jacob Brown, off ex-Wigan star Nick Powell’s pass.
The cross was mishit, allowing Whatmough to get back and clear – to the defender’s huge relief.
Dwight Gayle headed another decent opportunity over the bar, before Wigan cut open the visitors and really should have taken the lead.
Tendayi Darikwa’s lovely cross looked perfect for the onrushing Will Keane. However, Wigan’s top scorer headed over from six yards, with most of the goal free to aim at.
The crowd that had braved the elements were desperate for a goal to warm their hearts.
And it almost arrived at the beginning of the second half, when there was a mad goalmouth scramble in the home box.
Luckily for Wigan, goalkeeper Jamie Jones was in the right place at the right time to make a super stop with his legs.
The respite was only temporary, however, as Stoke broke the deadlock just after the hour mark. Tymon drove through the left channel and this time smashed the ball under an exposed Jones.
Wigan immediately went all in, sending on strikers Josh Magennis and Charlie Wyke for Nathan Broadhead and Darikwa, with Keane dropping into the number 10 role.
But they were unable to really lay a glove on the Stoke defence.
And it needed a mixture of Jones and Whatmough to desperately clear the ball as Stoke threatened a second in the closing stages.
Wigan thought they had rescued in the first of six added minutes, after another scramble in the Stoke six-yard box.
Tom Naylor bundled the ball home, but the flag was up on the near side.