10-man Wigan bow out of Europa Cup despite taking first-half lead
Chris McCann red carded for handball in 42nd minute
Maribor’s goalkeeper Jasmin Handanovic makes a decisive save under the chyallenge from Wigan’s Jean Beausejour during their Group D Europa League match in Maribor, Slovenia. Photograph: AP Photo
Former manchester City striker Uwe Rosler took charge of his first Wigan match having succeeded the unpopular Owen Coyle at the weekend.
Wigan’s hopes of reaching the last 32 were hanging by a thread after a home defeat by Zulte Waregem two weeks ago and they needed to win in Slovenia and hope Rubin Kazan, who had secured top spot, could beat Zulte. The Russians won 2-0 but, reduced to 10 men in the first half, Wigan were unable to prevent a sixth consecutive defeat.
Wigan pressure was rewarded when Nick Powell tumbled under pressure from Arghus and Szymon Marciniak pointed to the spot. Gomez’s penalty was central but Jasmin Handanovic dived over the top of the ball to give Wigan the lead.
Rosler’s side paid a heavy price when Chris McCann handled Damjan Bohar’s shot and was sent off. Scott Carson pushed Dejan Mezga’s penalty onto a post but the ball fell for the same player to equalise.
In the second half the Slovenians offered a lot more, with Damjan Bohar drawing a save from Carson at the near post before Ales Mertelj shot over. The pressure was growing, though. James Perch gave the ball away in a dangerous area down the right but it looked like the chance had gone as a misplaced pass rolled out of the box but running onto it was Filipovic who arrowed his shot into the top corner for the winner.
NK MARIBOR: Handanovic, Milec, Rajcevic, Arghus, Viler, Filipovic, Mertelj, Mezga (Crnic 81), Fajic (Mendy 85), Tavares (Cvijanovic 77), Bohar. Subs not used: Pridigar, Mejac, Zahovic, Vuklisevic. Booked: Arghus, Tavares, Mertelj, Viler.
WIGAN ATHLETIC: Carson, Perch, Rogne, Barnett, Beausejour, McArthur (Boyce 75), McCann, McManaman (Watson 46), Gomez, Espinoza, Powell (Fortune 65). Subs not used: Nicholls, Crainey, Shotton, Meadows. Booked: Espinoza, McCann, Rogne.
Referee: Szymon Marciniak (Poland).
Attendance: 9, 000