Wigan Athletic boss relaxed on Christ Tiehi signing situation

Kolo Toure has intimated it's a matter of when and not if Christ Tiehi becomes Wigan Athletic's latest January signing.

The 24-year-old midfielder's club, Slovan Liberec, confirmed earlier this week that he was on his way to Wigan, initially on loan.

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A permanent deal - understood to be worth around £880,000 - is dependent on Latics remaining in the Championship.

Latics are closing in on the signature of midfielder Christ TiehiLatics are closing in on the signature of midfielder Christ Tiehi
Latics are closing in on the signature of midfielder Christ Tiehi
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Tiehi, who spent the first half of the season on loan at Slavia Prague, is waiting to put pen to paper.

And when asked about the situation during his Thursday morning press duties, Toure says it's close to completion.

"The backroom staff are working on that now," he said.

"As you know, I'm no specialist on all that.

"My job is to make sure we identify the right players, and then train them to be ready to play for the team.

"We have great people working hard behind the scenes to make sure all the paperwork is in hand and the boy is able to do that.

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"Those people are doing a great job, day and night, and it's all about the team work.

"It's not just about me, it's about the collective, and making sure everyone's working hard for the best of the club."

Tiehi had strong interest from clubs in Belgium, but has opted to join up with Toure - a national hero in the Ivory Coast.

Liberec coach Luboš Kozel told blesk.cz earlier this week: "According to what I saw, he was also a valid player in Slavia.

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"But of course there were also some economic conditions and Slavia evaluated it was not quite a priority for them.

"I know at the moment they are mainly interested in attacking players, that's why they didn't exercise the option.

"If he was here, he was very valid for us. But we'll see how it all turns out. I think it might happen he won't be here."

Tiehi came through the ranks at Le Havre, and bizarrely spent the 2019/20 campaign on dual registration at Woking and Tonbridge Angels before moving to Opava in the Czech Republic in 2020.

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He joined Slovan the following year, and has five caps for the Ivory Coast at Under-21 level.

His dad, Joel, scored 28 goals in 50 games for the Ivory Coast, retiring just before Toure’s maiden call-up.