Nicholls to stay at Cobblers

Lee Nicholls will continue at Northampton Town on loan

Lee Nicholls will continue at Northampton Town on loan

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ROBERTO Martinez is hoping Lee Nicholls will be ready to put pressure on Ali Al Habsi’s first-team spot when he returns from his latest loan spell at Northampton.

The England Under-20 international yesterday rejoined the League Two outfit for the rest of the season, after his initial loan spell expired.

And the Wigan boss admits it was a no-brainer to sanction the deal after seeing an “immense“ improvement in Nicholls, both on and off the field, during his time at Sixfields.

“We’ve been very pleased with Lee’s development at Northampton and it was an easy decision to allow him to stay down there,” Martinez told the Evening Post.

“He has adapted to first-team football magnificently, and it’s important we allow him to continue to develop as a player and a person. We still have a 24-hour recall option should we have any injuries here but he will be there until the end of the season.”

Nicholls has seized his opportunity at Northampton with both hands, keeping seven clean sheets in his 16 appearances.