(CNN) -- Liverpool's hopes of claiming the fourth and final Champions League place in the English Premier League suffered a setback as a first half Hugo Rodallega goal gave struggling Wigan a 1-0 home victory on Monday.
The Colombian striker scored his eighth league goal of the season in the 35th minute after some poor play from Liverpool's Dirk Kuyt.
The Dutchman lost possession on the edge of his area and the ball eventually reached defender Emmerson Boyce, whose cross was superbly volleyed home by Rodallega.
The closest Rafael Benitez's side came to scoring was when Fernando Torres struck the upright in the eighth minute, after a Maxi Rodriguez header had dropped to him at the far post.
Defeat leaves Liverpool down in sixth place in the table, a point behind Tottenham and Manchester City but having played more matches than their rivals.
Meanwhile, Wigan's victory ends a run of seven league matches without a win and lifts them four points clear of the relegation zone.
"This is one of the days to be very, very proud of Wigan. The players showed great composure, great understanding. If anything we looked dangerous on the break and with the right decision could have got the second goal," Wigan manager Roberto Martinez told ESPN television.
Meanwhile, Valencia missed out on strengthening their grip on a Champions League place after being held to a 0-0 home draw by lowly Racing Santander in the Spanish Primera Liga.