Date:Friday August 19 2011
Vital Swansea asks Vital Wigan editor 'worbo' for his thoughts ahead of Saturday's big game between Swansea City and Wigan Athletic at the Liberty Stadium.
So you survived with 3 points to spare last season, how did this compare to the fans' expectations of Roberto Martinez's second season in charge?
After starting the season in shambolic fashion against both Blackpool and Chelsea some fans voiced their disquiet and the majority thought we might be in for a tough few months, but we finished the season with our second highest top division points total, scored our second highest number of goals as a top division club and played some really exciting football at times, especially in the run in when we were superb. At the start of the season most fans would have taken 16th, so I think looking back it was probably how we saw it panning out really.
There seemed to be quite a lot of criticism aimed at Martinez last season for the team's poor form, but after avoiding relegation your fans seem to have more confidence in the manager. How is the general feeling towards him now? Is he the right man to take you forward and can you improve on last season's finish?
As I said there was disquiet after a poor start, but the way the players responded in the final third of the season gave the supporters an insight in what can be achieved under Martinez, stylish football with a great end product, winning games. When Villa came in for him summer we held our breath, when he turned them down to stay at the Latics there was a great sense of euphoria amongst many fans, an increase in season ticket sales I think tells part of the story, the supporters like what he is doing, not just with the first team, but with the club as a whole, without doubt he is the right man for the job and I can see us challenging for the dizzy heights of 14th - 12th this season.
Swansea City are quite an unknown quantity in the Premiership this season, and although the majority of pundits and journalist predict 20th place for us, the fans, manager and players seem more confident of a better challenge. What's your opinion on the Swans, can they stay up?
I don`t see any reason why Swansea can`t stay up, I know historically the play-off winners are the ones who struggle most out of the promoted clubs, but from what I have read you have a shrewd manager in Brendan Rodgers and some good players in your squad, you will no doubt find it tough, as all the bottom 12 teams do! But I have a sneaky feeling you will retain your place at the top table come the end of the season.
Who do you think will be Swansea's men to watch on Saturday?
I like the looks of Danny Graham, I thought he was class last season with Watford, Nathan Dyer also looks a handful with his pace and trickery, though I think we need to keep a close eye on Scott Sinclair, former players always have a habit of biting you on the bum.
And who is Wigan's big threat that we should look out for?
Victor Moses, fast, direct, great skill, superb talent. He has had a fantastic preseason, scoring goals for fun and really on top of his game, last weekend against Norwich he was the star performer again and looked head and shoulders the class act on the field, so watch out for young Vic, also our most under-rated player Ben Watson, he makes the team tick in the centre of the park, great distribution and also an eye for goal, our leading scorer at the moment with one!
As you may be aware, some Swansea fans are still angry and disappointed towards Martinez for the way he left etc. Were you surprised by the fans' reaction of his decision to leave us, or should they be more respectful for how far he took us and understand that 'that's football'?
A bit of both really, it can leave you disappointed and frustrated when managers and players leave, especially when it looks like it is still very much work in progress, but like you say that is football and we have had it happen to us, it can create a little bit of humorous banter between yourself and the 'new` club if done in the right spirit, I don`t like the snarling and venomous attacks, they just seem very bitter.
You faced Norwich last weekend, and now you're up against another promoted side. What did you think of Norwich, are they good enough to stay up, and who do you think will finish higher in the table?
thought Norwich looked quite poor if I am being honest and I was disappointed we didn`t win, and win comfortably. They were workman like but not a lot of class about them, their back four was very shaky, midfield flat and no punch up front, they caused most problems through high punts into our box but rarely troubled us really, we made most of the problems for ourselves! If I had to pick a team to finish bottom come May, on that viewing then I`d go for Norwich, we had 20 attempts on goal and on another day we`d have battered them, in my opinion they won`t finish above Swansea.
What is your score prediction for Saturday's game?
2-1 Latics win, with a late goal to settle a closely contested game, good luck for the season and enjoy the ride.
Thanks to Vital Wigan for the time in answering our questions. We also answered questions for their site which you can read here
Date:Friday August 19 2011
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