London: The Latics end their winless run but in the process inflict a third consecutive heavy defeat against Paul Lambert`s inexperienced side with a win that rarely looked in doubt.
Wigan ended their six-game run without a win, cruising to a 3-0 win over Aston Villa at Villa Park on Saturday.
Ivan Ramis gave Roberto Martinez`s side the lead after just three minutes, while quick-fire strikes in the second half from Emmerson Boyce and Arouna Kone sealed the tie.
Villa’s young side had gone into the game following two heavy defeats and Paul Lambert responded with an attack-minded 3-5-2 naming Stephen Ireland, Barry Bannan and Brett Holman in midfield. Ramis returned to the Latics line-up after a recent injury lay-off.
Wigan could have been given a chance to open the scoring in the second minute when Matt Lowton handled Franco Di Santo`s long ball, but from the resulting corner that was awarded, Jean Beausejour’s floated delivery found the unmarked Ramis on the edge of the six-yard box and the Spaniard got away from Christian Benteke to power past Brad Guzan.
Shaun Maloney felt he too should have been awarded a spot-kick after being felled by Stephen Ireland in the area, and also fired a shot over from the edge of the area after strong work on the left from Beausejour.
Aston Villa grew in confidence however towards the end of the half, with Lowton and Joe Bennett each contributing from the wings as their midfield began to maintain possession.
Benteke had the ball in the back of the net after good work from Holman but goal was ruled out for an offside earlier in the move. The Belgian then turned provider for Holman, but he smashed his effort over from just inside the area.
The Villans continued to push forward in the second period, but were caught with a sucker-punch as Maloney received a quick throw-in and found Boyce who drove towards the box and played a one-two with Kone before sweeping the ball into the bottom corner.
Minutes later, Kone netted a third as Di Santo threaded a through-ball from outside the box to the Ivorian, who withstood a weak challenge from Lowton before rounding Guzan and rolling the ball into the net.
The goal was met with fury from the home support, who began to depart the stadium.
Kone wasted a late chance to score a fourth, losing control of the ball after rounding Guzan, but the three points proved enough to lift the Latics out of the bottom three and plunge Villa into further doubt.
First Published: Sunday, December 30, 2012, 08:52