Latics chasing Jordi return
WIGAN Athletic are trying to pull off a sensational swoop to bring former favourite Jordi Gomez back to the DW Stadium from Premier League Sunderland.
The 31-year-old swapped the north west for the north east in the summer of 2014 after Latics fell in the Championship play-offs to QPR.
However, after a reasonable first year on Wearside, he fell down the pecking order in his second season and was loaned out to Blackburn Rovers in January.
Latics were actually offered the chance to sign Gomez before he moved to Ewood Park, only for finances to scupper the proposed deal.
“Jordi’s agent did give us a call, and it was there,” Caldwell told the Evening Post at the time.
“But I felt we were fine in that area, and financially it was a difficult one to do.
“Jordi is a player I obviously played with, and know the quality he has.
“It would have been great to have him back...but it wasn’t to be.
“I work for the football club, and I have to do the right thing for the football club - that’s what I get paid to do.
“If it doesn’t make sense financially, then we’re not going to do it.
“We have to work within certain budgets, and we have done that.”
Intriguingly, Caldwell did leave the door wide open to the deal being resurrected this summer, were Latics to win promotion back to the Championship.
“You never know - in football you have to be open to everything,” he admitted.
“We’ll look at that in the summer, when hopefully we will have that problem.”
Having booked their place back in the Championship with the League One title in the bag, Latics are now in a much stronger position to put together a package that could be of interest to Gomez and Sunderland.
Boss Caldwell is actively looking to bolster his playing squad for next term, but there would be no more popular signing than the return of the mercurial Spaniard.
Defender Stephen Warnock has already made permanent his loan move from Derby, one of ‘four or five’ targets Caldwell had been looking to bring in.
Gomez, it seems, could well be next through the door, if a deal can be struck which suits all parties.
Although the playmaker moved to Sunderland on a free transfer, the Black Cats may want compensating for the final 12 months of his contract.
Gomez, who won the Player of the Year award during his last season with Latics, would also have to take a pay cut to fit into the Wigan wage structure.
But with one more year of parachute payments on the way, Latics will do all they can to make the deal happen.