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Kone ready for relegation battle

Arouna Kone believes Wigan Athletic will benefit from a full week of preparation when they face Tottenham this weekend.

Kone, an August arrival from Levante, has scored 10 goals in the Premier League this season but Roberto Martinez’s side remain in the bottom three with five games remaining.

Wigan have faced a hectic schedule in recent weeks thanks to their success in the FA Cup and the striker is glad to be able to rest ahead of the meeting with Spurs.

“It’s a big week,” he told the club’s official website.

“[We have] to mix rest with hard work and be physically ready for the game at our own pace rather than having to play three games within a week like we’ve had to recently.

“It is crucial that we have a full week to prepare for the Tottenham game.

“It’s a key match so being able to prepare properly will really help us and we need to be focused because Tottenham are a tough team.”

Wigan are fighting for their Premier League survival for a fourth consecutive season but for Kone, unlike many of his team mates, this is a new experience.

“It’s the first time in my career that I’ve been in this situation of fighting to stay up so it’s a new set of emotions for me,” he added.

“As a team we have to use those emotions to get through this spell and keep the club in the league.

“The quality of our players is there for all to see and the way we have played in the last two games has been very good, the only thing that has been missing is the finishing touch and a bit of luck at that end of the field.

“We’ve got that belief in the squad to achieve what we want and if we can win at the weekend then it will give us a huge amount of confidence.

Tue 23 April, 2013
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