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Last Updated: Monday, 14 May 2007, 13:57 GMT 14:57 UK
Alan Hansen's column
Alan Hansen
By Alan Hansen
BBC Sport football expert

Paul Jewell's decision to leave Wigan is a sad day for the club as they have lost a really good manager.

I am very surprised as I thought he was settled at Wigan. With all the emotions he went through on Sunday you would never have known he was going to go.

It is a complete and utter surprise.

Wigan boss Paul Jewell (top) and Neil Warnock
It must have been absolute purgatory in the last 20 minutes

It is difficult at Wigan because you just cannot get the players in. Wigan can offer the wages but players just will not come.

Getting them into the Premiership and then keeping them there speaks volumes about the great job he has done.

It is sad day for Wigan but also a sad day for Paul because I think he really likes Wigan - but if he feels that is as far as he can take them then so be it.

Wigan has been good for Paul and he has been good for Wigan - and he has been very good for the Premiership as well.

Even though he has said he wants to take a break from football, the speculation will start immediately, with the Manchester City post available following the sacking of Stuart Pearce.

Paul is a very confident guy and I am sure if he can get a big job he will back himself to thrive in that environment. I do not think he will have any problem.

The news caps off a fantastic climax to a thrilling Premiership season.

I watched Wigan's match at Sheffield United and it was one of the great games, in terms of tension and excitement.

It was heartbreaking for Sheffield United but the absolute other end of the scale for Wigan.

It is a fantastic achievement for them - three or four weeks ago I thought they were dead and buried and Jewell did an amazing job to get them fired up for that match.

You could argue that those sort of games are even bigger than the title-deciders.

Losing your Premiership status is massive and that was reflected in the emotions of the managers at the end.

What they went through, especially in the last 20 minutes, must have been absolute purgatory.

It was like the Alamo and Sheffield United were pummelling them and Wigan had 10 men, plus striker Emile Heskey playing at centre-half.

It was one of the great performances from Wigan, in terms of grit and determination and never say die.

It is really unfortunate that the situation with West Ham and Carlos Tevez's ownership has clouded the relegation issues.

It is going to rage on and on and I have no idea what the outcome is going to be but I would imagine they are going to have to sort it out soon.

Sheffield United's fate was in their own hands

You cannot have it dragging on into next season or the season after that.

The Premier League is in charge so they will have to sort it out.

It is all a bit messy and hopefully we will get an outcome soon.

Sheffield United manager Neil Warnock is the latest to criticise teams putting out understrength teams.

Liverpool did at Fulham last week and Manchester United did it against West Ham on Sunday but it is really difficult to police.

The big teams have rested players in other league matches - Manchester United regularly rotated players especially at home, as have Chelsea, so it is difficult to say what is a weakened side.

Manchester United had enough chances - as did Liverpool against Fulham - to win the games. There is nothing you can do about that.

Sheffield United's fate was in their own hands and over 38 league matches the table does not lie.

Manchester United picked up the Premiership trophy on Sunday and Sir Alex Ferguson would get my vote for manager of the season.

Ferguson has brought Manchester United back from the dead. I watched them play Liverpool at Anfield last season and they really struggled.

He has revitalised them and they have done exceptionally well to reclaim the crown.

Six to eight weeks ago my player of the season was Didier Drogba but Cristiano Ronaldo has made it a very close call.

Drogba's goals were unbelievable and if you took them away from Chelsea they would have really struggled.

If you took Ronaldo's goals from Manchester United I still think they would have achieved what they have.

But I would not argue with Ronaldo. He has had a great season, he is fantastic to watch.

He used to be all about party tricks but with no end product. Now you have the party tricks and the end product as well.

And finally a word on Robbie Fowler, who played his last game for Liverpool at the weekend.

I have watched Robbie since he was 14 and he is a Liverpool legend. He was born to score goals, whether it was with his left foot or his right foot he was brilliant.

Before he had his injuries, a lot of ex-Liverpool players who went to the games would just talk about Robbie and how good he was.

I have no idea what he is going to do but I hope to see him playing in the Premiership next season.



Barclays Premier League Table
01 February 2010 22:00
    P GD PTS
1 Chelsea 23 38 54
2 Man Utd 24 36 53
3 Arsenal 24 32 49
4 Tottenham 24 20 42

5 Liverpool 24 16 41

6 Man City 22 14 41
7 Aston Villa 23 13 40
8 Birmingham 23 -1 34
9 Everton 23 -1 32
10 Blackburn 24 -15 28
11 Fulham 23 -2 27
12 Stoke 22 -7 26
13 Sunderland 23 -10 24
14 Wigan 22 -23 22
15 West Ham 23 -9 21
16 Bolton 22 -15 21
17 Wolverhampton 23 -21 21

18 Burnley 23 -23 20
19 Hull 23 -26 20
20 Portsmouth 22 -16 15

SEE ALSO
Jewell resigns as Wigan manager
14 May 07 |  Wigan Athletic
Wigan name Hutchings as new boss
14 May 07 |  Wigan Athletic
Sheff Utd step up Tevez legal bid
14 May 07 |  Premiership
Warnock hits out after relegation
14 May 07 |  Sheff Utd
Jewell angry with Premier League
14 May 07 |  Wigan Athletic
Sheff Utd 1-2 Wigan
14 May 07 |  Premiership
Man Utd 0-1 West Ham
13 May 07 |  Premiership
Fulham 1-0 Liverpool
05 May 07 |  Premiership
Ronaldo secures PFA awards double
22 Apr 07 |  Football
Fowler to leave Anfield in summer
11 May 07 |  Liverpool


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