Tag Archives: championship

Pay him what he wants! 3 reasons why Wigan Athletic need Premier League striker

Wigan Athletic and Jordan Hugill. The move has been on and off, more times than a light switch. According to the Bristol Post, Wigan is closing in on a move for the West Ham United striker.

It was reported by The Sun journalist, Alan Nixon, that Latics had agreed on a fee for the striker, however, wages were a problem. It’s a deal that needs a resolution soon, with the season starting in less than two weeks and Wigan only having two recognised strikers on their books.

Here at The Football Manc Cave, we have a look at why it’s vital that Wigan get this deal over the line…

It makes or breaks our season

Signing a striker will make or break our season, I expect us to hit mid-table or higher if we sign a Hugill/Joao, with the other attacking quality we have. However, without a regular goalscorer, we’ll be fighting relegation. It’s all good and well having a solid defence, and lots of creative players, but without goals, you don’t win games.

Offers more than goals

Hugill is more than a goalscorer, his greatest attribute is his ability to hold the ball up and bring others into play. That’s exactly what we need. We have Michael Jacobs, Josh Windass, Anthony Pilkington, Gavin Massey and others that can chip in with goals. However, it’s getting them the ball in dangerous areas. Having Hugill would allow us to play direct at times, he can battle with defenders and bring our wide-men into the game.

Excites the fans

A striker signing for a few million quid will excite supporters. Fans like a number nine that guarantees goals, we had one not long ago, sold him on deadline day. £4 million though for a player only proven in League One, it was a great deal for us and one we couldn’t turn down. Back on topic, fans want goals and strikers that bully defences. Hugill has done that at Preston, his move to West Ham just didn’t work out. Come to Latics and make yourself a hero!

Should Preston North End go all out for Man City 22y/o?

Journalist Alan Nixon has reported that Man City winger, Brandon Barker could be going to Preston North End.

Nixon tweeted yesterday to claim that the 22-year-old is wanted by Preston. He also claimed that Man City are wanting a fee for their player, however, Preston only wants him on loan so this is why his future has been held up.

Some Preston fans are reacting to the statement and saying that it sounds ‘typical’ of their club as they don’t want to spend money. Others are arguing that their club is being sensible in not signing the City player immediately, as he has had a previous case of hamstring injuries. If the player can get over his injuries and stay fit, here are two reasons why Preston should aim to pull this deal off…

Loan Spell

Barker has been on loan to different clubs for most of his time at Man City and last season he spent time at Preston. He only made 12 appearances for The Lilywhites which is probably why they are sceptical of offering him a permanent deal as this wasn’t enough time to make up their mind. A loan deal would be sensible and would make sense for Alex Neil as he can make his mind upon the winger when the loan period comes to an end.

If Barker performs well, the deal could be turned into something permanent if they can meet Man City’s fees. However, if things don’t go to plan, Preston would have been right in not spending and wasting money on him.

Man City

Pep Guardiola’s side is known for the pressure he puts them under due to his outstanding training and coaching. Brandon Barker would have been a part of this development in the times, he’s not been on loan and he could bring that experience to the players at Deepdale. He has spent all his youth with the Blues and broke into the senior squad in 2015. Since then he’s been on loan to NAC Breda and Hibernian as well as Preston. All this experience should give him the determination to find his feet at Deepdale if he can stay fit.

He won’t only have the determination to get starts and play regular football, he will also want to impress other clubs. If this loan goes ahead, he knows he will be being monitored by Man City, other possible clubs of interest and he’s also had caps for England youth squads so maybe he will aim to impress Gareth Southgate. Man City will keep an eye on him to see if they can put his value up when the time comes for the 22-year-old to make his mind up on his future.

Three players that have to start tonight for Salford City against Middlesbrough

Salford City will face Championship side Middlesbrough in their toughest game of pre-season.

It is likely that a strong side will be playing against Middlesbrough tonight, as Salford have rotated heavily in previous pre-season games.

Salford’s biggest season as a football club is around the corner. It is important for Alexander to nail down his tactics within the squad and iron out any issues. Against Woking, Salford struggled tremendously defending set-pieces but looked brutal on the counter-attack and around the box. It is clear that Salford is great on the attack, but need work done in the defence in order to cope in League Two.

Their last match was at home, against Woking. Salford City suffered a 3-1 defeat despite looking the better outfit throughout the game.

Three players, in particular, stood out for Salford City and should feature against Middlebrough as manager Graham Alexander looks to settle on his best eleven…

Richie Towell

In the game against Woking, new signing Richie Towell ran the centre of midfield and was the stand-out player all game. He even bagged Salford’s only goal with a brilliant strike. His high work rate and quality will be important the Salford City this season and is likely to play against Middlesbrough.

Emmanuel Dieseruvwe

In Salford’s 3-1 defeat to Woking, their forwards faced two towering defenders. The height difference made it very difficult for the Ammies to challenge in the box. Dieseruvwe himself stands at 6ft 4 and was much more of a threat against Woking’s big defence.

Danny Lloyd

Lloyd’s low centre of gravity and fantastic close control makes him a fantastic attacking-midfielder for Salford City. The number 10 is constantly finding pockets of space and relaying the ball to his teammates. He is crucial to the way Salford attack. In a game against Middlesbrough, Lloyd can truly test himself against a Championship side.

Salford’s biggest season as a football club is around the corner. It is important for Alexander to nail down his tactics within the squad and iron out any issues. Against Woking, Salford struggled tremendously defending set-pieces but looked brutal on the counter-attack and around the box. It is clear that Salford is great on the attack, but need work done in the defence in order to cope in League Two.

Two things Cook would have learnt from Wigan Athletic’s draw with Bradford City

Wigan Athletic prepare for matches against Premier Leagues, Everton and Burnley, following their 1-1 draw vs Bradford City on Saturday. The Latics’ Championship campaign starts on Saturday 3rd August against Cardiff.

Wigan visited Valley Parade, as boss Paul Cook looks to gear up his side for another tough season. Former Latics striker scored a penalty in the first half before Anthony Pilkington levelled minutes into the second half. The Latics dominated after the break, however, couldn’t find a winner. A good run out for both sides.

Dan, from The Football Manc Cave, looks at what Cook will have to learn from the draw, ahead of their last two friendlies this week.

Anthony Pilkington will play a big part this season

Pilkington has arguably been our best player this pre-season, and I expect him to be like a new signing after having a full pre-season with us.

The attacker signed in January, and played brilliantly on his debut vs Aston Villa, showcasing his skills to assist Gary Roberts. After that, he struggled to make a real impact. Whether it was down to lack of match fitness, or just him not being on the same wavelength as our other attacking players, I’ve no doubt he’ll be much better this season. He’s got a lot of quality, scores goals, quick, versatile and has been successful in both the Premier League and Championship.

We need a striker

It’s plain and simple, the fans, staff and owners know it. We need a striker. We are trying though, which is positive news. Sam Gallagher opted to sign for Blackburn Rovers, while a move for Jordan Hugill has been agreed with West Ham United, however, there’s a dispute over wages ongoing. They are the right types, target men. Hugill struggled last season at Middlesbrough because Pulis didn’t get players around him in support. Wigan plays with three attacking midfielders behind the striker, Hugill holds the ball up and attacks the box very well. The striker would be a good signing if we can get it over the line.

‘Announce promotion’ ‘You draw your away games you win your home games, you go up as champions, up the tics’ Wigan Athletic fans optimistic following draw

Wigan Athletic drew 1-1 at Bradford City yesterday, as they continue preparations ahead of their Championship campaign starting against Cardiff City on August 3rd.

Former Latics striker James Vaughan scored a penalty in the first half before Anthony Pilkington levelled the score shortly after the break.

Paul Cook’s final two preseason games will see them host Premier League sides, Everton and Burnley.

Let’s see what Wigan fans made of the 1-1 draw vs Bradford yesterday…

Forget Hugill: Here’s 2 strikers Wigan Athletic should try to sign

According to Sky Sports, Wigan Athletic’s proposed move for Jordan Hugill has fallen through. It was reported a fee was agreed with West Ham United, however, player wages were the stumbling block.

Dan, from The Football Manc Cave, looks at two other potential strikers that may interest Paul Cook…

Lucas Joao

Money, money, money. IEC has bags of it. Splash the cash on this guy and we’ll hit the play-offs. The Star reported that the Portuguese striker handed in a transfer request a couple of days ago, he must be desperate for a pie and a pint in Wigan, I can’t blame him.

Joao is a player I’ve always rated, and I never feel he gets the game time or recognition he deserves. A central defenders nightmare in my opinion, physical, strong, quick with an eye for goal. A Drogba type, just not as good. The striker scored 10 goals in 31 appearances last season, however, he played second fiddle to Steven Fletcher for the majority, and The Owls chopped and changed managers.

Wigan has real quality creative players. Michael Jacobs, Gavin Massey, Anthony Pilkington and hopefully Jamal Lowe will be joining us soon. If we could provide him with service, he would score goals. Joao also fits that ‘target man’ role that Paul Cook is presumably looking to fill.

I think we’d be priced out of a permanent move, maybe a loan would be a sensible option for all parties. I, for one, would like him at Latics. A very good Championship striker.

Kieffer Moore

The Tykes will be looking to hold onto him this summer, as he’ll be needed to score the goals that’ll keep them in the league. Perhaps not a risk worth taking if it would take a £3-4 million bid, nevertheless a good striker that deserves another chance at this level.

What can exciting Bury 18y/o bring to Brentford

Brentford stole Bury’s youth academy product Joe Adams for an undisclosed fee yesterday.

Joe Adams, 18, is described as an ‘exciting winger’ in his farewell message from Bury FC. The youngster has been a part of Bury’s set up since playing at the under 8’s level.

Despite being a boyhood player for Bury, Adams has swiftly exited the squad in a time of great trouble. In their financial stress, Bury may be starting their campaign with a 12 points deduction. After their fantastic promotion, it is likely that the club will be relegated after this season.

Adams is taking a leap up the EFL by being snatched by Brentford, a side who finished 11th in the Championship last season.

The Welshman Adams made six senior appearances for the club. Regularly taking the armband on many occasions for the Youth Academy, it demonstrates that this youngster has quality as well as leadership skills.

What can he bring to Brentford?

It is clear that the boy has an abundance of talent. Hence why a club of much higher quality has sealed the deal for him.

For starters, Adams will bring excitement to the fans, and seeing a youngster shine is one of the greatest feelings in football.

Should we see him feature regularly on the pitch, Adams will most definitely provide many assists for Brentford. In just 90 minutes of game time, Adams got 1 assist for Bury in the EFL Trophy, according to Transfermarkt.

The purchasing of Adam indicates that Brentford’s scouting is of great quality. It also tells the fans that Brentford is looking to build for a more prosperous future.

It is unsure as to whether Adams will get much first-team football this season, but he is most definitely a name to keep an eye on. Joe Adams.

Blackburn Rovers eye up a move for Man City’s 21y/o defender

According to the Lancashire Telegraph, Blackburn Rovers are lining up a loan move for Man City defender Tosin Adarabioyo.

The 21-year-old spent last season on loan at Championship rival West Bromwich Albion, playing 36 times as The Baggies reached the play-offs, finishing fourth, before losing to arch-rivals Aston Villa in the semi-finals on penalties.

Adarabioyo is predominantly a central defender, playing much of his Man City youth days in this position. However, he lined up as a right-back for the majority of the last campaign, proving his versatility and ability to play across the back four.

A move for the Premier League youngster is believed to be nearing completion. Tony Mowbray has so far added Stewart Downing, Bradley Johnson and Sam Gallagher to his ranks, Adarabioyo would be Rovers’ first loan signing of the summer.

Mowbray saw his side concede 69 goals in 46 league matches last season, including having the leakiest away defence in the league. The departures of Paul Downing and Jack Rodwell will force the boss to strengthen his defensive options.

Adarabioyo would add height and physicality to a threadbare Rovers backline. He’s very confident on the ball, and happy to both attack and defend if playing full back.

Rovers have so far added quality and experience, in particular with the signings of Downing and Johnson. Gallagher was an expensive buy, however, has bags of potential and now the move is permanent, has a chance to really express himself and make the number nine spot his own.

Perhaps Mowbray is on the hunt for young talent on loan, who can freshen up his experienced side, providing him with a selection headache for their opening match on August 3rd. Adarabioyo would kick-off this trend, the youngster would be a good signing for Blackburn.

‘Give Lang a start!’ Wigan Athletic’s 11 should look like this ahead of their friendly with Bradford City

Wigan Athletic travel to Bradford City on Saturday, for a pre-season friendly, before they play host to Premier League sides Burnley and Everton.

Dan from The Football Manc Cave predicts what Paul Cook’s side may look like on Saturday, as they continue their preparations ahead of their season opener vs Cardiff on August 3rd.

Kicking off with David Marshall in goal, the more game-time he can get in pre-season the better because he’ll be number one next season. Let’s welcome Antonee Robinson back with a start, while Nathan Byrne will adopt his regular right-back spot. Danny Fox missed the final two games of last season through injury, so it’s important to play him, and form a partnership with Cedric Kipre in case Cook doesn’t sign the centre half he’s chasing.

Captain Sam Morsy got a well-deserved break after not being picked in Egypt’s African Cup of Nations squad, he’ll be raring to go. Chris Merrie is a highly-rated youngster, he could be in for some game-time next campaign, let’s see what he’s got against League Two opposition.

Similarly, Lopes has bags of potential, and will likely be loaned out if Jamal Lowe completes his move, however, I feel he deserves a chance to express himself. Lee Evans performed well in the ‘number 10’ role at the end of last season, he may well be needed next year too. Michael Jacobs was injured for a large part of last season, it’s vital he fully participated in pre-season and is 100% fit for the opener vs Cardiff.

Finally, Callum Lang is one of two strikers at the club. We know what we’ll get from Joe Garner. Lang has never played in a league game, maybe next season is his time? Let him loose.

2 free agents that Wigan Athletic should be looking at

A number of free agents have already been signed by clubs this summer. However, The Football Manc Cave look at whether there are any hidden gems that could benefit Wigan Athletic next season.

Wigan lost a large amount of players at the end of season, from loanees returning to their home clubs and the club deciding not to offer a number of players new contract.

This has left Paul Cook’s squad looking rather thin, therefore he’ll be looking to add depth to his side before the season starts on August 3rd.

Let’s pick out a couple of freebies that he may be in the hunt for…

Gary Hooper

I’m amazed he hasn’t been picked up in this summer transfer window. I can only assume his wage demands are a stumbling block for a lot of sides, with Wigan getting Nick Powell off their wage bill – perhaps there’s room for a big earner or two.

Hooper is 31 now, and has experience of scoring goals, particularly in the Championship. The English striker has hit double figures in a single season, on four occasions during his career. As well as scoring 63 times in 95 games for Scottish giants Celtic.

A natural goal scorer that would benefit most sides in this league, with his goalscoring prowess.

Danny Williams

He’s the next Reece James. I wish. Obviously we won’t find anyone as good as James, however, we need to replace the attributes he blessed us with. Pace, power and ability in midfield. Williams is 6ft2, works hard and is a well-rounded player. I always rated him at Reading, perhaps not the best on the ball, however very effective at winning the ball and driving forward.

Lee Evans is being tipped to replace James at the moment, but he played better further up the pitch towards the end of last season. I’d like to see us sign a physical midfielder, to slot alongside captain Sam Morsy.

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