Mar 17, 2013 at 4pm UK at ​DW Stadium
WiganWigan Athletic
2-1
NewcastleNewcastle United
Beausejour (18'), Koné (90')
Scharner (45')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Santon (72')
Perch (50'), Gutiérrez (67')

Match Analysis: Wigan Athletic 2-1 Newcastle United

Aruna Kone pokes home Wigan's winner against Newcastle on March 17, 2013
© AP Photos
Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at a controversial and eventful match between Wigan and Newcastle, which ended 2-1 to the hosts.

Wigan Athletic kept their survival hopes alive courtesy of a controversial 2-1 win over Newcastle United this afternoon.

Jean Beausejour gave the hosts the lead in the 17th minute when he swept home a cross at the far post. The Latics should have been reduced to 10 men five minutes later when Callum McManaman put in a potentially career-threatening tackle on Massadio Haidara, but the referee didn't even give a free kick.

Davide Santon levelled the sides in the 71st minute but Wigan secured all three points with a dramatic 89th-minute winner courtesy of Arouna Kone, although replays suggest that it shouldn't have been allowed due to a handball offence.

Here, Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at an action-packed 90 minutes at the DW Stadium.

Match statistics:

Wigan:
Shots 13
On target 10
Possession 48%
Corners 7
Fouls 7

Newcastle:
Shots 9
On target 4
Possession 52%
Corners 3
Fouls 12

Was the result fair?

Over the whole balance of play, the result was just about fair. However, the way in which it came was anything but fair as Wigan's winner shouldn't have counted. The hosts had the better of the first half and deserved their lead at the break, although that could have been different had McManaman been sent off. The second half was more even and a draw wouldn't have been an unfair result on either side, but if anyone deserved to win, it was Wigan.

Wigan's performance

It wasn't quite on the same level as their 3-0 win over Everton in their previous outing, but it was a good performance nonetheless. They were the better side in the first half and held Newcastle at arm's length for much of the second too. They were lucky to finish the game with 11 men and also lucky with the winner, but if they perform like that from now on, then they will stand a good chance of beating the drop yet again.

Newcastle's performance

Newcastle will have a burning sense of injustice at the end of the match but they simply didn't do enough to win it. They were poor in the first half and only really threatened the Wigan goal on one occasion. Even in the second half they struggled to find a way past the opposition defence until their goal.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Shaun Maloney: The Wigan winger was a constant threat to the Newcastle defence and, when the hosts were on top in the first half, it was Maloney who looked more likely to come up with something. The Scot will be key to his side in the run-in as they look to pull off another great escape.

Biggest gaffe

The term 'gaffe' may be too frivolous a word to use about McManaman's tackle on Haidara, but referee Mark Halsey's failure to spot it was the biggest mistake of the game. The challenge was a knee-high career-threatener and there is no place for such tackles in football. It was a stone-wall red card and long ban, but Halsey didn't even award a free kick. Shocking decision.

Referee performance

Poor. Not only did he miss McManaman's tackle on Haidara, but he also missed the handball in the buildup to Wigan's winner. Both were quite blatant, but Halsey somehow made the wrong decision on both counts. The latter could have a huge effect on the seasons of a number of teams as it gifted Wigan two extra points that could be vital in the relegation battle.

What next?

Wigan: Wigan will look to build on this win when they host Norwich City at the DW Stadium at the end of the month.

Newcastle: Things only get harder for Newcastle as they face an away trip to Manchester City in their next match.

Aruna Kone pokes home Wigan's winner against Newcastle on March 17, 2013
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