Baines keeps Wigan on the brink

Wigan Athletic 1 Everton 1: Former Latics hero succeeds with Everton's second penalty after Al Habsi save raises hosts' hopes

Leighton Baines was part of Paul Jewell's Wigan team who broke new ground by climbing into the top flight in 2005, but his late intervention, a penalty equaliser with 13 minutes remaining, denied his old club a vital victory in their efforts to remain among the elite. After Charles N'Zogbia's 21st-minute opener, Ali Al Habsi kept Wigan's lead intact by saving Mikel Arteta's penalty, and with Everton short of attacking inspiration, they held the advantage for almost an hour. However, Hugo Rodallega then handled Baines's near-post corner and the old boy came back to haunt them.

Wigan began with a burst of energy, Ben Watson giving Rodallega a sight of goal inside two minutes only for the Colombian to drag his shot wide. Although Everton were soon seeing plenty of the ball, it was Wigan who made the breakthrough. Maynor Figueroa carried the ball forward down the left, Tom Cleverley fed it on to JamesMcCarthy and his chipped pass freed N'Zogbia on the right side of the box. The chance looked to have passed when, challenged by Tim Howard, the Frenchman checked back and stumbled. But he swiftly regained his footing, turned and curled a fine shot around Howard into the far corner.

Everton looked to respond and within a minute the lively Leon Osman had forced a fingertip save from Al Habsi. The Omani goalkeeper, on loan from Bolton, had made a costly mistake in Wigan's defeat at Manchester City last month when letting a David Silva shot trickle through his legs but he came to the rescue in the 35th minute by saving Arteta's penalty. N'Zogbia made a rash challenge by diving in to fell Osman after the Everton man had collected a short corner from Baines just inside the penalty box but Arteta, back after a six-game absence, failed to beat Al Habsi, who dived low to his left to palm the ball away.

Wigan lost Mohamed Diamé and N'Zogbia to thigh injuries either side of the break but the latter's replacement, Victor Moses, quickly assumed the mantle as the main threat to Everton's defence, forcing two near-post saves from Howard in quick succession and giving Baines some uncomfortable moments. When his trickery left the England left-back on his backside, McCarthy was twice denied the opportunity to capitalise as Phil Neville and Phil Jagielka both got in blocks.

Wigan's manager, Roberto Martinez, who expects to have Diamé and N'Zogbia back next week, said: "Probably the key moment was in the second half when Everton were trying to go forward and left themselves exposed a little. We took advantage of that but Tim Howard was in outstanding form." The Spaniard applauded his side's character, saying: "We kept the ball very well and were really brave and opened Everton up a couple of times with really good pass and move and scored a good goal from open play. It is an another point – we couldn't afford to lose today."

Although Everton had Tim Cahill and Arteta starting a game together for the first time since mid-February, neither looked at his best, and despite Osman's best efforts Everton lacked spark. Their manager, David Moyes, responded by introducing Jermaine Beckford and Seamus Coleman midway through the second half but it took Rodallega's misjudgement to get them level.

After Al Habsi had turned behind a Jagielka shot, the Colombian stuck out a hand when Baines swung the ball back in and gave Baines the chance to succeed where Arteta had failed. He made no mistake, lashing the ball high to Al Habsi's right.

"The ball was swirling around, Hugo jumped too early and on the way down it hit his hand. He is devastated, as you can imagine," said Martinez. Steve Round, Moyes's assistant, paid Wigan credit for "going right to the end".

Rodallega might have made amends but saw one shot beaten away by Howard before finding the side-netting. When Howard spilled a Figueroa cross in injury time, the Colombian drove high over the crossbar. If this was tense, just wait till Wigan's remaining home game against West Ham.

Attendance: 17,051

Referee: Lee Mason

Man of the match: Tim Howard

Match rating: 6/10

News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
News
news
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions