WIGAN boss Roberto Martinez is hoping to create a bit of history when Arsenal visit the DW tomorrow night.
Latics have never won back-to-back Premier League games since Martinez took over in the summer of 2009, but will be full of confidence after the Boxing Day victory over rock-bottom Wolves.
Despite the enjoyment of seeing his side record their third away win of 2010, the Wigan boss is not about to rest on his laurels just yet.
However, he admits he would love a repeat of last season’s dramatic come-from-behind win over the Gunners that all-but secured Wigan’s top-flight status.
“There’s no time to really enjoy any result in the Premier League over Christmas, and we have Arsenal up next,” the Spaniard said.
“Last season’s game against Arsenal is a great moment in our history, and I’m sure the fans’ memories are still very fresh.
“But we are looking forward to a new challenge, and I’m sure we’ll be up for it.
“We know they are an outstanding football team, but we are playing at home – and we have the belief from last season’s win that we can perform against anyone here.”
The 3-2 victory over the Gunners back in April was arguably the most famous day at the DW, when Latics came back from 2-0 down inside the last 10 minutes to record a dramatic 3-2 triumph.
Latics themselves have been victims of late comebacks this term, most notably at Newcastle in October when they surrendered a two-goal advantage to draw 2-2. Thankfully, Latics managed to see out the game at Wolves on Sunday to move up to 16th position in the Premier League – and Martinez says that represents a massive step forward for the club.
“When you look at the game at Newcastle, we were in the same situation but unable to come away with the three points we should have,” he explained.
“We always talk about learning lessons, and we showed we’ve learnt a valuable lesson of how to see a game through and we now have the know-how to complete a game with a victory.
“That was something we really wanted to eradicate from our play, and we spoke about it before the Wolves game.
“When you take a two-goal lead against anyone, especially away from home, you need to know how to play with the scoreline on your side.
“Although we didn’t know it at the time, the experience we suffered at Newcastle helped us, and we are learning all the time as a squad.
“I was pleased in the manner in which we coped with whatever Wolves threw at us, especially after getting a goal back.
“We used the experiences from St James’ Park earlier in the season to good effect, and were determined not to throw away all the hard work we’d produced.”
Martinez has a welcome selection dilemma for tomorrow’s game, with Hendry Thomas and Maynor Figueroa back from one-game suspensions.