Wigan Athletic link to Championship striker 'wide of mark'

Wigan Athletic are chasing a proven goalscorer as a matter of priority this month.

Friday, 7th January 2022, 1:49 pm
Matt Smith

But it's understood speculation suggesting they're in pole position to land Millwall forward Matt Smith is wide of the mark.

The 32-year-old frontman had been high on the January wish list of League One promotion rivals Portsmouth.

Sources on the south coast claimed Pompey had conceded defeat, with Latics believed to be leading the chase.

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While Latics are desperate for striking reinforcements, with Charlie Wyke recuperating after a health scare, Wigan Today understands Smith's name is not on their radar.

Latics chief Leam Richardson this week spoke of the fresh difficulties involved in bringing in even loan players during these unprecedented times.

"Because of the uncertainty at the moment, especially with Covid and the rulings, you can understand clubs being a little cautious in terms of keeping hold of players," he said.

"Obviously players will always want to play football, and take up loans, but their clubs will be very mindful of certain situations and the bigger picture.

"It was always going to be a different kind of market in mid-season, as opposed to last summer, and it was always going to hold its challenges.

"But with our numbers, it is a must that we strengthen, and we'll continue to try to bring in some good people to the football club."

Richardson would have been looking for reinforcements anyway, but the long-term issues with Wyke and Jordan Cousins mean that need has been increased.

"There's been various conversations behind the scenes, I continue to put my thoughts forward on where I feel we should be strengthening," Richardson revealed.

"Those conversations are ongoing with the chairman, the chief exec and the recruitment department.

"Fingers crossed we can make some inroads, because we're very aware we need to add depth, especially with losing Charlie and Jordan."

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