TALKING SPORT - Old boy Scharner hits the nail on the head

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“IF we can play like that for the rest of the season, I’ve got no doubts we’ll stay in the Premier League,” said Roberto Martinez.

It wasn’t the first time this season he’s said it.

But anyone who saw Latics absolutely batter West Brom at the weekend, only to somehow come away with a point, will surely feel the same.

Latics certainly didn’t play like a team who were resigned to their fate.

From the first minute they got at their opponents – who were defending the third-best away record in the division – and only a mixture of bad luck and poor finishing prevented them scoring the five or six goals that wouldn’t have flattered them in the slightest.

But once again, they were limited to only one goal, and the fear factor associated with being at the bottom was in evidence as another defensive switch-off allowed Paul Scharner – who else – to equalise.

Scharner was succinct in his post-match comments, revealing that Latics were rock bottom because “they can’t score and they always concede”.

Hardly rocket science, but it’s something that needs sorting out before it’s too late.

THE African Nations Cup didn’t just deprive Wigan of one of their better players for four weeks.

Before he left, Momo Diame was integral to the side. Since the international tournament, however, he hasn’t appeared the same player, as his two potentially-costly misses in front of goal – at Norwich a week ago, and last Saturday against West Brom – so harshly illustrated.

A FAN pulled me to one side at Sean O’Loughlin’s Riversiders’ tribute night last week and asked why I constantly put the boot into the RFL.

Truth is, I wish I didn’t feel the need to. But it’s hard not to criticise when they continue to sell the game short. Case in point. This week, Wigan play Warrington. You can guarantee Wigan will do their bit to promote the match. They have already put up several billboards.

Both coaches will do their bit by preparing their teams, and you can guarantee the players will surely do their bit in training, in giving interviews and on game-day.

The fans will do their bit by turning up or tuning in, Sky Sports will do their bit with fast-edited, high-octane adverts and – yes – at the local paper, we’ll try and do our bit by interviewing the players, profiling the teams and previewing what should be an exciting game. But come Friday, does anyone really expect the Wigan and Warrington branded Stobart lorries to be driving around their towns?

Or parked outside the DW Stadium, maybe allowing young fans to climb into?

KARL Pryce scored the decisive try for Bradford last weekend which condemned St Helens to their fourth straight defeat.

They’re now outside the play-off spots, coach-less and clue-less.

Always knew Karl Pryce would come good for Wigan eventually!