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Thursday 17 April 2014

Latics keep survival hopes alive

Arouna Kone, James McArthur and Callum McManaman, right, scored the goals for Wigan

Callum McManaman struck 10 minutes from time to give Wigan a 3-2 victory over West Brom and keep the Latics' hopes of another great escape alive.

The Latics twice came from behind before McManaman, who scored his first Barclays Premier League goal against Tottenham last weekend, swept home from close range following Shaun Maloney's superb run.

Shane Long and Gareth McAuley put West Brom ahead in the 29th and 50th minutes, only for Arouna Kone and James McArthur - with his first touch - the drag the visitors back into it.

The hosts were gifted a chance from nothing in the 10th minute when Ben Watson's handball handed them a promising free-kick, but Dorrans shot straight at Joel Robles. Kone was seeing less of the ball up front for the Latics but almost caught Ben Foster off guard with a skiddy long-range effort in the 19th minute.

West Brom took a deserved lead when Claudio Yacob kicked things off with a tackle deep in his own half and Romelu Lukaku picked out Markus Rosenberg's run with a wonderfully measured pass into the right channel. The Swede easily outstripped Watson and his low ball across goal left Long with a simple close-range finish.

Maloney went close with a free-kick in the 37th minute and the equaliser arrived two minutes later as Maloney found Jean Beausejour on the left flank and Kone beat Jonas Olsson to nod home the Chilean's cross at the far post.

Steve Clarke's side had more energy after the break and restored their lead five minutes into the second half. McAuley was the scorer, rising to head Dorrans' free-kick home after Kone made only a half-hearted attempt to track his run.

McArthur immediately found the net after coming off the bench, diving to head home Maloney's cross at full stretch for a dramatic first touch.

Wigan lost Beausejour to injury in the 74th minute but they were soon celebrating when McManaman and Maloney combined to put the visitors ahead for the first time. Maloney, somewhat inevitably, was the instigator, charging down the left wing and beating two men before pulling the ball back from the byline.

The finish was a simple one for McManaman but the effect could yet be huge on their season.

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