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TOM ON WIGAN

Posted on 19 February 2006  - 12:00

Tom Huddlestone always felt Wigan had the raw materials to make a success of their first season in the Premiership.

Tom Huddlestone always felt Wigan had the raw materials to make a success of their first season in the Premiership.

Midfielder Tom came up against the Latics in the Championship last season and was on the winning side with his former club Derby County at the JJB Stadium on Boxing Day last year.

Wigan eventually went up as runners-up while Derby's dream ended in the play-offs.

Paul Jewell's men have taken the Premiership by storm this season and arrive at the Lane on Sunday sitting pretty in ninth place and in the shake-up for European qualification. To add the icing on the cake, they have reached the final of the Carling Cup and play Manchester United at Cardiff next Sunday.

"Last season they were a well organised team in a back four, midfield two and four attacking players that did the job for them," reflected Tom.

"What I will say is that they had Nathan Ellington up front who I thought was a massive player for them alongside Jason Roberts, so they've done well to cope with that loss after he went to West Brom.

"They scored a lot of goals, didn't concede too many and that's always a good recipe and they've taken that into the Premiership."

What has impressed Tom was how Wigan recovered from five straight league losses in November and December - the plaudits going to boss Jewell.

"Full respect to Paul Jewell, he's done a magnifcent job there," added Tom.

"When you get into a rut of losing games your head can go but he kept their heads high and gave them the belief they needed to pull through."