Hugo to be offered new deal

Hugo Rodallega
Hugo Rodallega
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DAVE Whelan is adamant the departure of Charles N’Zogbia will not kick-off a mass exodus from Wigan Athletic.

Latics finally accepted a £9.5million bid from Aston Villa on Monday for the Frenchman, who will put pen to paper once he passes a medical and agrees personal terms.

While it was slightly less than Wigan were holding out for, it still represents a healthy profit on the £6.5million they paid to Newcastle in January 2009 – and a not-inconsiderable figure for a player with less than 12 months remaining on his contract and with only one club seriously bidding for his services.

N’Zogbia was not alone in entering the last year of his contract, with the likes of Hugo Rodallega, Ben Watson, Momo Diame and Hendry Thomas all able to talk to interested parties from January 1.

Rodallega, in particular, has been linked with a number of other clubs this summer, including Arsenal, Everton and Spanish sides Villarreal and Sevilla.

The Colombian has been away at the Copa America for the past month, where he helped his side reach the quarter-final stage.

Quotes attributed to Rodallega seemed to suggest he was open to the prospect of moving on after two-and-a-half years at the DW.

But the Wigan chairman insists that, boosted by the money coming in for N’Zogbia, ‘Hot Rod’ will be offered a new deal.

“We’ll be talking to Hugo when he gets back from the Copa America, and as far as I know he’s happy here. We’d like him to stay,” Whelan told the Evening Post.

“We’ve not had an offer in for Hugo, and I would imagine Roberto (Martinez) will be keen to get something sorted on that one.

“We do not want to be selling him, though – absolutely not.”

Watson admitted last week he was desperate to sit down with the club to discuss a new deal, while James McCarthy – who three years remaining on his current deal – is also in line for a bumper extension.

Meanwhile, Latics have expressed an interest in Derry City winger James McClean, according to the Irish club.

“Wigan had expressed a serious interest in James, they spent a lot of time checking him out,” said City chairman Philip O’Doherty.

LATICS have received an allocation of tickets for the pre-season friendly at Preston this Sunday, July 31 (3.00pm).

Tickets went on sale yesterday to registered supporters of Wigan Athletic with a previous booking history for fixtures at the DW Stadium, while cash turnstiles will also be in operation on matchday.

Subject to availability, these tickets will be on sale until 3pm on Friday, priced £10 adults, £5 under-16s and over-65s.