Roberto Martinez is like a younger me – I hope Wigan stay up, says Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Arsenal manager admits he would be 'sad' if Wigan go down but knows his side must win tonight

Arsène Wenger sees something of his younger self in Roberto Martinez and said it would be "sad" if Wigan Athletic are relegated, as they surely will be if they do not beat Arsenal on Tuesday night.

Arsenal and Wigan are both desperate for victory at the Emirates tonight for very different reasons. A draw would give Tottenham Hotspur the advantage over the Gunners in the race for fourth while also leaving Wigan needing a goal-difference miracle to stay up.

But having kept lowly Wigan in the Premier League for so long, and having won the FA Cup on Saturday, the 39-year-old Martinez has earned the admiration of the Arsenal manger. When asked whether he saw similarities with a young Wenger, the Frenchman agreed. "I don't remember – it is a long time ago – but the dedication, certainly yes."

Like Wenger, Martinez has based his approach around a commitment to attractive football and imaginative scouting. "Martinez has a positive philosophy. Above all, what you want is that he tries to play good football," added Wenger, who predicted he could go much further in the game. "That for me, is a good basis to go forward and move higher up. He looks to master the situations well."

While Wigan's game is no longer unique to them, Wenger praised their recruitment too. "More and more teams play that kind of football now. Swansea has joined in as well so all the teams play good football, Norwich plays good football," he said.

"That in the Premier League is now common but Wigan, what they have done as well is always discover players. You have to give them credit for that. With a small budget they find very good players and that's sad of course if they go."

After outplaying Manchester City to win the FA Cup final through Ben Watson's late goal on Saturday, Wigan will give Arsenal a real test tonight. Wenger said: "The level of energy they have shown on Saturday is absolutely huge, the transitional play they have done is absolutely fantastic, the speed from defence they've shown on Saturday was fantastic.

"It is a surprise that they are in the position that they are in because they have produced a remarkable game on Saturday and they played absolutely remarkably well on both flanks.

"They defended very well and they kept Man City very quiet for a big part of the game." Wenger acknowledged that Wigan's unpredictability could make for a difficult evening for his side. "You could see on Saturday they have quality and they played a remarkable game," he said. "We want to be at our best in a game of that importance." Arsenal come into this game in good form, having won nine of their last 12 Premier League games. "We are on a great run, a remarkable run," Wenger said. "We have a good spirit, a good understanding within the squad, so let's just continue to play."

Presuming that Tottenham beat Sunderland on Sunday, Arsenal need maximum points from their last two games to come fourth.

"They are important games but that is what you want to play for," Wenger said. "Two months ago we had no chance to be where we are today so we can only be happy with what we have done. Two months ago our destiny was not in our hands. Today it is, so we have done very well, so now let's finish the job and continue to play like we have been doing and take the points."

Points of order: what the teams need

An Arsenal win would mean Spurs would have to better Arsenal's result on Sunday. A draw would require Arsenal to win at Newcastle and Spurs only draw against Sunderland. A loss means Arsenal must win and hope Spurs lose. Wigan need a win to give them a chance of survival. A draw would require an 11-goal swing on Sunderland on the final day.

News
A 1930 image of the Karl Albrecht Spiritousen and Lebensmittel shop, Essen. The shop was opened by Karl and Theo Albrecht’s mother; the brothers later founded Aldi
people
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmA cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Sport
Louis van Gaal watches over Nani
transfers
Arts and Entertainment
Flora Spencer-Longhurst as Lavinia, William Houston as Titus Andronicus and Dyfan Dwyfor as Lucius
theatreThe Shakespeare play that proved too much for more than 100 people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
exclusivePunk icon Viv Albertine on Sid Vicious, complacent white men, and why free love led to rape
Sport
New Real Madrid signing James Rodríguez with club president Florentino Perez
transfersColombian World Cup star completes £63m move to Spain
Arts and Entertainment
Stir crazy: Noel Fielding in 'Luxury Comedy 2: Tales from Painted Hawaii'
comedyAs ‘Luxury Comedy’ returns, Noel Fielding on why mainstream success scares him and what the future holds for 'The Boosh'
Life and Style
Flow chart: Karl Landsteiner discovered blood types in 1900, yet scientists have still not come up with an explanation for their existence
lifeAll of us have one. Yet even now, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Arts and Entertainment
'Weird Al' Yankovic, or Alfred Matthew, at the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival Screening of
musicHis latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do our experts think he’s missed out?
Travel
Hotel Tour d’Auvergne in Paris launches pay-what-you-want
travelIt seems fraught with financial risk, but the policy has its benefits
Arts and Entertainment
booksThe best children's books for this summer
Life and Style
News to me: family events were recorded in the personal columns
techFamily events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped that
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn