Latics chairman to be made an "honorary Wiganer" after club's title success

Plans to recognise Wigan Athletic’s remarkable 2021/22 season have been revealed by the borough’s council, including a special honour for the club chairman.

By Charles Graham
Monday, 9th May 2022, 3:45 pm

Talal Al Hammad will be offered the title of “Honorary Wiganer” to recognise the impact he has made to the club and the community.

He took over Latics during one of the darkest episodes in their history, having been relegated from the Championship after suddenly being put into administration by the previous owner.

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Talal Al Hammad with the League One trophy

Under his stewardship in the last 14 months, the club first avoided dropping into Divison Two with a hastily put-together new team and then went on to win League One in the season just gone.

The club’s representatives will also be invited to a civic reception in the coming months at Wigan Town Hall.

Council leader David Molyneux said: “Winning a league championship and securing promotion is no easy feat, but given the rollercoaster ride the club has been on in the past two years, it makes the achievement even more remarkable.

“Everyone associated with the club deserves recognition. Wigan Athletic – along with all of our sporting clubs – is so important to our communities here in our borough and we’re delighted to be returning to the Championship next season.

Talal Al Hammad celebrates at Wigan Athletic's triumphant end to the season

“As the chants from the stands have stated, Talal is a Wiganer and we’re delighted to offer him this title. His enthusiasm and commitment have been clear for all to see and he has made a significant impact.

“We will be delighted to welcome club officials to the town hall very soon and formally recognise what has been an outstanding season.”

Mr Al Hammad said: “I am extremely honoured to be bestowed with the title of ‘Honorary Wiganer’, Wigan certainly feels like a second home to me when I travel to the UK from Bahrain!

“It was a surreal but special moment when I walked over to thank our supporters at Shrewsbury, only for them to start singing ‘Talal is a Wiganer’.

“I must place on record my appreciation to Wigan Council for their support, not just in the past 14 months, but also in the weeks and months prior to Phoenix 2021 Limited becoming the custodians of Wigan Athletic in March last year.”

Further details of the civic reception will be revealed in due course.