Coyle’s blast at three games in five days

Owen coyle has blasted the fixture schedule
Owen coyle has blasted the fixture schedule

OWEN Coyle has pledged to ring the changes for tonight’s Capital One Cup trip to Manchester City, after branding the scheduling of the third-round tie as ‘ridiculous’.

The re-run of the FA Cup final will be Wigan’s third game – in three different competitions – in the space of five days.

Latics managed to build on their 0-0 draw in Belgium against Zulte Waregem with a hard-fought 2-0 victory over Ipswich in the Championship on Sunday. But they will be hard-pressed to repeat their famous FA Cup final triumph against a City side who also played on Sunday but whose squad is one of the biggest in the country.

“There will be umpteen changes, because I’ll have to freshen the squad again,” Coyle fumed.

“I have to say that’s it’s ridiculous we’ve been asked to play on the Tuesday night after playing on Sunday.

“We’ve only got one day of recovery, and it’ll be three games in the space of five days.

“We’ve been dictated in that department – there’s not a lot we could do about it.

“The TV companies wanted to show Manchester United against Liverpool on the Wednesday night, which meant ourselves and Manchester City – who also played on Sunday – have to play 48 hours later.

“I’m not happy about it, because that kind of programme can easily lead to injuries when we already have players on the sidelines. But that’s the way it is.”

That could mean recalls for the likes of Jordi Gomez, Roger Espinoza and Stephen Crainey, who all sat out the weekend win over Ipswich.

Emmerson Boyce, Chris McCann and Nouha Dicko are also standing by after second-half cameos against the Tractor Boys, while there could also be chances for youngsters Lee Nicholls, Danny Redmond and Fraser Fyvie to show what they can do.

Grant Holt (knee) remains on the sidelines, along with Marc-Antoine Fortune (hamstring), Shaun Maloney (back) and Callum McManaman (leg).

Meanwhile, Latics fans have been snapping up tickets for next Thursday’s Europa League clash against NK Maribor at the DW.

Tickets went on general sale yesterday priced just £15 adults and £5 concessions, and can be purchased from the ticket office, the ticket hotline (0871 66 33 552) or online at

Tickets are also available for the home game against Rubin Kazan on Thursday, October 24, and the final group clash against Zulte Waregem on Thursday, November 28.

All games kick-off at 8.05pm.