Wigan v Birmingham preview
Bruce faces former club in relegation clash
Last Updated: April 4, 2008 11:31am
Palacios: Set to face former club
Wigan manager Steve Bruce has more than one reason to put one over Birmingham in their relegation clash at the JJB Stadium on Saturday.
Not only are the two sides languishing immediately above the drop zone but Bruce will be facing his former club for the first time since leaving the Blues for Wigan in November.
The Latics boss is still bitter about the manner of his departure from St Andrews, when his unveiling at Wigan was delayed by a dispute with Birmingham co-owners David Gold and David Sullivan over an image-rights bonus.
Bruce this week branded it "unforgivable" and could make them pay by taking a big step towards safety while leaving the Blues still in the relegation mire.
Wigan go into the game in 16th place, one point above Birmingham, and the Latics have been in impressive form at home.
Bruce's men have won five of their last eight league games at the JJB Stadium and will be aiming to bounce back to winning ways after losing at Blackburn and Portsmouth in their last two games.
Birmingham, meanwhile, boosted their survival hopes with a 3-1 home win against Manchester City last week to open up a four-point cushion over third-bottom Bolton.
Wigan midfielder Wilson Palacios is also set to face his former club having spent the first half of the season on loan at St Andrews.
The Honduras international is expected to return from a one-match ban, although fellow midfielders Michael Brown and Jason Koumas remain suspended.
Birmingham have two players suspended themselves, with Franck Queudrue joining fellow defender Liam Ridgewell on the sidelines following his red card against Manchester City.
Martin Taylor could therefore come in for his first appearance since his infamous tackle on Arsenal striker Eduardo.
Rafael Schmitz and Stuart Parnaby are also in contention to come into defence, although James McFadden (knee) and Olivier Kapo (hamstring) are set to remain out.
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