Belfast Telegraph

Figueroa late-show boosts Latics

Wigan secured a crucial injury-time 2-1 victory over fellow relegation candidates Birmingham at the DW Stadium to raise hopes of Barclays Premier League survival.

Left-back Maynor Figueroa smashed a shot with his weaker right foot past goalkeeper Ben Foster in the second of five added minutes to snatch three vital points.

Birmingham had taken an early lead through Liam Ridgewell before Tom Cleverley levelled midway through the opening period.

Birmingham led after six minutes when Martin Jiranek's flick-on found Ridgewell who reacted quickest to shoot past Ali Al Habsi.

Substitute Curtis Davies' first touch almost created a second goal when he headed Sebastian Larsson's corner back across the six-yard area where Cameron Jerome's shot was blocked by Al Habsi.

Apart from Cleverley's early shot the hosts had not threatened until the on-loan Manchester United midfielder equalised in the 25th minute.

Ben Watson's brilliant pas picked out Emmerson Boyce and Foster could only push his cross into the path of Cleverley who scored from close range. Late in the half Charles N'Zogbia deflected over Boyce's cross from close range while Larsson hit the crossbar with a free-kick.

Craig Gardner broke clear of the defence but shot straight at Al Habsi and then Foster saved well as Figueroa blasted a loose ball at him from eight yards.

With 10 minutes remaining Hugo Rodallega had the ball in the net after looping a shot over Foster but referee Lee Probert ruled the Colombia international had pushed Roger Johnson as they challenged on the edge of the area.

However Foster was left stunned when a late shot from Figueroa whistled past him in the 92nd minute.


From Belfast Telegraph