A BELOW-PAR display across the board saw Latics come up short at in-form Norwich.
The Canaries were flying after a recent run that had seen them beat Arsenal and Manchester United among others.
And they flew out of the blocks when Anthony Pilkington gave them an early lead.
Somehow Latics remained in the game until the break despite almost constant Norwich dominance, and the half-time introduction of Shaun Maloney sparked a mini-revival.
The Scot fired Latics level within five minutes of the restart, but the visitors couldn’t edge in front despite being on top.
And Wes Hoolahan made them pay by restoring Norwich’s lead at the three-quarter mark.
Latics had chances to equalise at the death through Arouna Kone, but it would have been a travesty had the home side not won, with ali Al Habsi pulling off several world-class saves to keep his side in the game.
Latics: Al Habsi 8; Boyce 6, Lopez 7, Figueroa 7; Stam 6, McCarthy 6, McArthur 7, Beausejour 5; Gomez 6, Boselli 5, Kone 6.
Subs: Pollitt, Golobart, Jones (for McCarthy, 46) 7, Fyvie, McManaman, Maloney (for Gomez, 46) 7, Di Santo (for Boselli, 72).
Norwich: Bunn; Whittaker, Turner, Bassong, Garrido; Johnson, Tettey, Hoolahan, Snodgrass, Pilkington; Holt.
Subs: Rudd, Howson (for Hoolahan, 85), Martin, Jackson, Morison (for Holt, 90), Bennett (for Pilkington, 90), Barnett.