Fleetwood Town fell to a 3-2 defeat to Wigan Athletic at Highbury Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Goals from Danny Andrew and Callum Morton were cancelled out by second-half strikes from Callum Lang, Will Keane, and Curtis Tilt.
The first chance of the game fell to James McClean. The #23 tried to test Alex Cairns from distance but his shot was dragged way wide, and Cairns had nothing to worry about.
Joe Garner was the first Fleetwood man to try and get on the scoresheet, as he controlled Andrew’s switch of play and cut inside, his right-footed strike from the edge went agonisingly over.
Paddy Lane won his side a free-kick and there was only ever one man going to take it. From 20 yards out, Andrew had no room to get it over the wall so opted to go for the goalkeeper’s side and his perfectly struck free-kick was too powerful for Ben Amos.
The number three’s opener made it six in the season already so far, with five free-kicks and one open play goal. He doesn’t look like he is slowing down anytime soon either as that is two goals in two games for the left-back.
Fleetwood controlled the opening 15 minutes of the game very well, limiting Wigan to restricted chances, one of which was a header on goal from Charlie Wyke, but once again, Cairns wasn’t tested as it went wide.
Some great play down the left-wing by Paddy Lane carved open an opportunity for a cross into the box, the winger found Garner who connected very well with his header, but the Town forward, who had Amos concerned, had to watch it go just over the bar.
Town held off a brief spell of pressure from the visitors and broke away on the counter, with Jay Matete producing a brilliant piece of play to get away from three incoming tackles. Garner received the ball on the edge of the box and was brought down before getting his shot away, penalty claims went around the ground, but the referee waved them away.
Fleetwood’s goalkeeper had to be alert just before the half-hour mark, as Wyke connected with a cross and looked to have beaten Cairns, but the keeper made an unbelievable save to deny Wigan’s #9 and the rebound was then headed wide.
Cairns was on hand to make another spectacular save as Tendayi Darikwa hit one from long-range, it looked certain to nestle the top right corner, but Town’s goalkeeper was at full stretch to keep his side in the lead.
Town found themselves 2-0 up early in the second half thanks to Callum Morton. Callum Johnson began to press the Wigan backline and soon after, Dan Batty and Morton joined him and forced a sloppy back pass back to the keeper, which led to Fleetwood’s #9 winning a penalty after being fouled by Amos.
The man who won the penalty was also the man to convert it, he picked the ball up straight away and smashed it down the middle for his seventh goal of the campaign.
Johnson once again caused problems down the right, refused to let what looked like a stray pass, go out for a goal kick, and he crossed it in first time from the byline to the second half goal scorer, but this time his shot headed towards goal was blocked.
With just under half an hour to go, Wigan pulled one back. Lang was the man to finally beat Cairns, the number 19 managed to squeeze it in at the far post.
Shortly afterward, Wigan found themselves back on level terms. Will Keane glanced his header towards the far post and Cairns couldn’t get there in time.
Fleetwood conceded a third. Curtis Tilt got on the end of a corner and gave the visitors the lead.
After Wigan took the lead, Fleetwood found it hard to get back into the game and unfortunately couldn’t find an equaliser.
Town XI: Cairns (GK), Andrew, Clarke (C), Morton, Camps, J.Garner, Matete (G.Garner 78’), Hill, Batty, Johnson, Lane (Morris 72’)
Unused Subs: Crellin (GK), McLaughlin, Pilkington Biggins, Clark
Wigan XI: Amos (GK), Whatmough, Power, Wyke, Keane, Kerr (Edwards 57’), Tilt, Lang, Bayliss, McClean, Darikwa (C)
Unused Subs: Jones (GK), Watts, Pearce, Massey, Jones, Humphrys