Blackburn salvage a point with injury time penalty

Wigan 3 Blackburn 3

Blackburn striker Ayegbeni Yakubu slotted home a penalty eight
minutes into injury time to salvage a point against Wigan at the end of a
dramatic and controversial DW Stadium clash.

Albert Crusat appeared to have given Wigan the points in the 88th minute, but referee Andre Marriner awarded a spot-kick after David Jones fouled Rovers goalkeeper Paul Robinson, who was up for a late corner.

The goal was priceless for Blackburn's under-fire boss Steve Kean, who was barracked throughout by the massed ranks of Rovers fans before the sensational finale.

But the dramatic scenes were not witnessed by Rovers owners Venkatesh and Balajil Rao, who flew in from India this morning for the match but mysteriously left at half-time.

An extraordinary game also saw the 48th-minute sending-off of Blackburn midfielder David Dunn and a controversial second goal for Rovers in which Morten Gamst Pedersen appeared to take two touches from a corner.

Rovers, heading to the DW Stadium with Kean's future once again in the spotlight, had grabbed the lead after just 68 seconds when Yakubu lobbed goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi.

Wigan were level through Jordi Gomez seven minutes later and ahead through captain Gary Caldwell after 31 minutes, but Junior Hoilett equalised before a breathless finale in which either side could have claimed the points.

After eight straight Barclays Premier League losses, Roberto Martinez's Wigan started the game in desperate need of points but Kean also knew it was potentially critical to his future.

And a nervy game exploded into life in an instant with Yakubu pouncing on the end of a Steven Nzonzi header and lobbing the opener over Al Habsi with just 68 seconds on the clock.

Yakubu's strike must have delighted the Rovers owners but Martinez's men hit back with Victor Moses having a loud penalty appeal turned down.

But it took just seven minutes for the Latics to level when Grant Hanley's half-clearance fell to Gomez, who lashed a swinging left-foot shot home from the edge of the box.

Dunn and Ruben Rochina were both booked by referee Marriner in a manic first quarter of an hour in which both these struggling sides looked well up for battle.

The home side's committed play paid off again in the 31st minute when they grabbed the lead, Caldwell wriggling free of his marker to power home a header from a David Jones corner.

And Wigan should have gone further ahead in the 38th minute when Ronnie Stam found space on the left and delivered a cross which Moses blazed over the bar from eight yards.

With the home side well on top, discontent began to brew among the swelled ranks of Rovers supporters behind the goal, with some chants directed at the removal of Kean and the owners.

Jones looped a long-range effort just wide for Wigan at the start of the second half before Rovers were reduced to 10 men when Dunn received a second yellow card for hacking down Moses.

The Rovers owners missed their side's equaliser on the hour when a short corner deceived the Wigan defence and Pedersen crossed for Hoilett to prod in at point-blank range.

But there was controversy over the equaliser with replays appearing to clearly show Pedersen take two touches from the set-piece before delivering the ball in for the goal.

Rovers missed a great chance to reclaim the lead in the 72nd minute when Yakubu sprang clear and rounded Al Habsi before a brilliant saving challenge from Steve Gohouri.

Crusat, a replacement for Gomez after 68 minutes, brought a fine save out of Robinson from long range before the keeper stood firm to deny Rodallega from six yards.

Crusat then netted what appeared to be the winner in the 88th minute when Rodallega headed down and the striker prodded a low effort which deceived Robinson and bobbled into the net.

But there was still time for Yakubu to send Al Habsi the wrong way from the penalty spot to bring down the curtain on a remarkable DW Stadium clash.

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Life and Style
President Obama, one of the more enthusiastic users of the fist bump
science
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Griffin holds forth in The Simpsons Family Guy crossover episode
tv
Life and Style
Upright, everything’s all right (to a point): remaining on one’s feet has its health benefits – though in moderation
HealthIf sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
News
Kristen Stewart and Rupert Sanders were pictured embracing in 2012
people
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried