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Wigan v City: Latics scouting report

DANGERMAN: Will Grigg is on fire, so we've heard...

DANGERMAN: Will Grigg is on fire, so we've heard...

Manchester City face Wigan in the FA Cup fifth round on Monday night as our assault on four competitions continues.

And ahead of kick off, we've taken a closer look at the League One high-flyers. 

Form

Wigan sat top of the table but have suffered a recent downturn in fortunes.

Following an impressive 16-game unbeaten run, which started in November and saw the Latics score 35 and avoid a single shot on target against in the whole of December, the Lancashire outfit have fallen to two defeats in their last two games - a 3-1 setback at Southend and a 2-0 home loss at the hands of Blackpool.

They have dropped to second - a point behind Shrewsbury with a game in hand, level on points with local rivals Blackburn and seven points above fourth-placed Rotherham. Paul Cook's men are the division's top scorers with the best defence too.

Entering at the first round, Wigan have played six FA Cup encounters this season (including second and third round replays), kicking off with a 2-1 triumph over Crawley.

Amongst their victims are Premier League duo Bournemouth and West Ham, whilst AFC Fylde have also been downed.

READ: Which TV channel is Wigan v City on?

WATCH: City 4-1 Burnley FA Cup highlights

Playing style

Wigan are expansive with most of their attacking threat heralding from wide positions. Their two full-backs Nathan Byrne and Reece James act more as midfielders, while Sam Morsy (who is suspended for this game) and Max Power screen the two centre-backs Chey Dunkley and Dan Burn to cover the roving wing-backs.

Expect plenty of overlaps when Wigan attack, through Byrne, Gavin Massey or Ryan Colclough on the right, and James and Michael Jacobs on the left.

Much of the Latics' play occurs through Nick Powell in the middle. He drops deep for the ball, but also works well off Will Grigg.

Grigg’s natural movement in the area is a dream for wide players. He senses where they’re going to put the ball and makes a move at the last second to get in front of defender.

Dangerman

Former United man Nick Powell looked completely at home against Bournemouth and West Ham.

He's a powerful athlete, with great control on the ball and he's good in the air in both boxes. He plays a free role behind the striker and gets involved in every single attack.

He has scored 12 goals this season and he’ll be the one with a piece of magic to lift the crowd.

Another one to watch is Will Grigg. He's on fire, so you may have heard... The forward has 15 goals to his name this campaign - nine in League One and six in the FA Cup.

City Remixed: Aguero Rockets

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City Remixed: Aguero Rockets

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The view from opposition manager, Paul Cook...

"We're asking the FA for special dispensation to play 14 players!

"You have to be careful with what you say sometimes because all we can do is sit here and offer superlatives about what Man City are doing and how good they are.

"The reality for us is we've got to try to beat them. With the best will in the world, everything that they do, every side that comes before them, they seem to put away quite comfortably.

"It's hard, isn't it? How can you say it's just a normal game when you're going to play possibly the best team in the world at the minute?

"It's going to be such a challenge for us all, for everybody connected with the club, because if you can't believe when you go into a tie that you can win it, then there's no point."

Team news

Shaun MacDonald and Jordan Flores are long-term absentees, while Samy Morsy is suspended. Former City man Devante Cole, Donervon Daniels and James Vaughan are cup-tied.

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