Goalless Draw At The DW StadiumIt ended honours even at the DW Stadium as John Sheridan’s men played out a 0-0 draw with promotion chasing Wigan Athletic.
Carl Winchester and Matt Palmer had the best chances for Latics in both halves.
Winchester struck from 30 yards, which forced the Wigan goalkeeper to tip over the crossbar, whilst in the second, Matt Palmer struck wide from 25 yards as the points were shared.
Manager John Sheridan named an experimental line up with Cameron Dummigan starting in a right wing position and James Wilson at full back.
It was nearly the Welshman who forced the opening goal of the game as he crossed into the centre on four minutes and Craig Morgan’s header went past his own goalkeeper but went wide of the post.
Athletic were well on top in the opening 10 minutes of the game but they were almost caught on the break as Conor McAleny weaved past the defence but struck past Joel Coleman’s goal.
Wilson was proving to be a handful down the right hand side, and his cross into the centre found Rhys Murphy but the striker missed his kick and the chance was lost.
On 16 minutes, Anthony Gerrard fouled McAleny as he raced through on goal. He went down holding his knee and received a booking for the foul.
McAleny picked himself up to take the free kick but could hit the side netting.
Gerrard returned to the action gingerly as Latics looked to build on the strong start.
Athletic forced a succession of corners and after a good ball into the box, the ball fell as far as Winchester on the edge of the box who struck from 30 yards.
It looked destined for the top corner but Wigan goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen tipped the ball over the crossbar as Latics knocked on the door of the opening goal.
From the resulting corner, Latics thought they had forced the ball over the line but the referee spotted a foul and the chance was lost.
On the half hour mark, Wigan’s Jason Pearce was booked for stopping Latics breaking from the back.
Latics continued to put pressure on Wigan but were struggling to create a clear cut goalscoring opportunity.
With five minutes of the half remaining, Gerrard was unable to continue from his earlier injury and he was replaced by Aaron Amadi-Holloway for his debut.
He made an instant impression, winning his headers and it would be Latics that finished the first half strongly.
Firstly Jonathan Forte tested the palms of Jaaskelainen, whilst a minute later, he was forced into action again.
This time it would be Liam Kelly to strike from the edge of the box and the former Bolton goalkeeper saved well to his left.
Wigan made their first change of the game at half time as Sam Morsy replaced Donovan Daniels.
Compared to the first half, it was a quiet opening to the second with both sides enjoying spells of possession.
An injury to Wigan’s Pearce slowed the game down and after he recovered it was the hosts that pressured Latics.
Former Latics loanee Reece Wabara wondered into the penalty area but was crowded out, whilst Yanic Wildschut forced a save from Coleman.
Lee Croft was introduced into the action as Latics stepped up a gear and went in search of the winning goal.
On 77 minutes came Athletic’s best chance of the second half and it came from good build up play.
Holloway chased on to a loose ball in attack, he knocked the ball back to Kelly who played it across for Palmer to strike and it just went inches past the post.
The game then started to come alive as Wigan broke down the other end, however McAleny fluffed his lines in front of goal.
With just under 10 minutes remaining in the game, Danny Lafferty’s free kick was tipped over the crossbar as Latics went in search of a winning goal.
As Latics put the pressure, they had to wary of the counter attack but Coleman was aware and stood up well to the task.
Wildschut cut inside and was stopped by the legs of the goalkeeper and two minutes later, Will Grigg forced Coleman into a neat stop at his near post.
In this end-to-end encounter, Winchester saw his shot blocked with three minutes to go Latics stood resolutely at the back.
Into injury time, Winchester again had a chance but the ball just got stuck under his feet, and in this entertaining encounter, the referee blew time to seal a valuable point for Latics.
Wigan Athletic: Jaaskelainen, Perkins (Colclough 76’), Daniels (Morsy 46’), Power, Grigg, Morgan, McAleny (Davies 81’), Pearce, Wildschut, Wabara.
Subs not used: Nicholls, James, Vuckic, Hendry.
Oldham Athletic: Coleman, Wilson, Gerrard (Holloway 41’), Dieng, Lafferty, Dummigan, Palmer, Kelly, Winchester, Murphy (Croft 72’).
Subs not used: Cornell, Mills, Tuohy, Cassidy, Edmundson.
Goals: Wigan Athletic 0-0 Oldham Athletic
Attendance: 9,817 (1,408 visiting supporters)