Welcome to Talking Heads.

Before and after every first-team fixture, our commentator and an Arsenal blogger have their say on the game.

Arsenal welcomed Wigan Athletic to Emirates Stadium in the Premier League on Tuesday and our Talking Heads for this game were commentator Dan Roebuck and James McNicholas from Gunnerblog.

In the end, this was a relatively straightforward win for Arsenal but they were given a scare by Roberto Martinez's side.

I was impressed with the intensity of the hosts' play in the opening stages but Wigan rallied well and pulled level quickly. Wojciech Szczesny's save from Arouna Kone at the start of the second half was vital and, once Theo Walcott put the Gunners in the lead, there was only going to be one winner.

Santi Cazorla's performance really impressed me. He's been terrific throughout the season and played a major part in all four goals.

Arsène Wenger will be delighted to go into Sunday's game knowing that a win will secure a place in the top four. Going to Newcastle will be tough but, based on their current form, Arsenal will be confident of finishing the job.

I think Wigan winning the FA Cup on Saturday afternoon will make Tuesday night's match a great deal more difficult for Arsenal.

Roberto Martinez's side may be tired but upsetting the odds as they did at Wembley means that they will go into the game with confidence sky high. They of course won at the Emirates last season as well which will only add to the team's belief.

Arsenal's league form since the turn of the year has been very impressive and Arsène Wenger will be hoping that his team can go into the final weekend of the season with their destiny in their own hands. They haven't played their most attractive football in recent weeks but have consistently picked up points which is paramount.

What has really impressed me about Arsenal in the last couple of months has been the solidity at the back. Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny have drawn plaudits for how they have performed but I think the whole team have put a lot of work into their defensive play and it has certainly shown.

With both teams needing to win, it's all set up for an evening of attacking football and I think Arsenal will have just enough to secure a big three points.

Last night’s result was cause for sighs of relief from north London and beyond. Fans of Sunderland, Aston Villa, Fulham and Southampton were relieved to see their safety ensured by Wigan’s demotion. Arsenal supporters will be hoping the Mackems return the favour this weekend: if Paolo Di Canio’s side can told Tottenham to a draw at White Hart Lane, the Gunners are guaranteed fourth place.

For a 20-minute spell either side of half-time it looked as if Wigan would wrench Arsenal’s destiny from their own hands. However, tired legs and minds eventually took their toll and Arsenal were able to reap the benefits. Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla were in devastating form, and Lukas Podolski showed his finishing prowess to end the night with two goals.

Arsenal travel to St. James’ Park knowing a win will absolutely guarantee a place in the top four at Tottenham’s expense. It may not come with a trophy, but it would certainly bring with it a huge degree of satisfaction.

At this stage of the season, every single match is hyped as decisive. However, it would not be hyperbolic to state that few come bigger than this. Wigan know they must win to preserve their hopes of Premier League survival. Arsenal too must win if they want to prevent Tottenham edging ahead in the race for Champions League qualification.

The high stakes should ensure an entertaining game: Wigan are an enterprising side at the best of times, and the need to claim all three points will suit a side with few attacking inhibitions. Arsenal's improving defence will be sorely tested by a team who gave Manchester City the runaround at the weekend, and Arsène Wenger may pick the more conservative Nacho Monreal over Kieran Gibbs to cope with the threat of Callum McManaman.

In attack, he seems likely to persist with Lukas Podolski as the central striker. Arsenal fans will be hoping the pace of Theo Walcott will test a Wigan defence aching from their Wembley exertions. Get your money on a goalfest, and hope the Gunners can out-shoot the Lactics.

* The views expressed in Talking Heads do not necessarily reflect those of Arsenal Football Club or Arsenal Broadband Ltd

Copyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source
14 May 2013