Cook to commit to long-term Wigan Athletic deal!

Paul Cook
Paul Cook

Wigan Athletic manager Paul Cook is understood to be on the verge of signing a long-term contract extension to secure his future at the DW Stadium.

The Wigan Post understands Cook spent much of Friday locked in talks with chairman David Sharpe thrashing out terms of a new deal, with both parties wanting to commit following a hugely-successful campaign that will hopefully end with the League One title.

Cook has already delivered Championship football in his first year with Latics – his third promotion in five years after previous success at Portsmouth and Chesterfield.

And with a number of high-profile Championship and League One clubs reportedly watching devlopments, Sharpe has moved swiftly to tie down his man on improved terms.

Early on Friday, Cook had affirmed his commitment to Wigan during his weekly press conference ahead of the trip to Doncaster that will hopefully secure the League One title.

When asked about the speculation linking him to Sunderland, he remarked: “It is what it is.

“All I can say is that I’m very happy here, my staff are very happy here, and hopefully we can enjoy being here next year.

“Challenging in the Championship will be tough, but we’re going into it with our eyes open.

“If we go into it collectively, there’s no limit on what you can achieve.”

Cook has been mindful of saying too much, given the events of last summer, when he secured the League Two title for Portsmouth and signalled his intention to stay long-term – before leaving just days later partly due to the club being taken over by new owners.

“This time last year I made a comment about staying at Portsmouth...yet two or three days later my whole world had changed,” he said.

“In football none of us ever knows what’s around the corner, and you have to be careful.

“All I can say is we’ve had a lovely year here...we’re happy here, the staff is settled here.

“The club – and the chairman, and the chief executive – have been great with me, and long may it continue.”

Given Cook’s history as a former Latics player, his staying put will be warmly welcomed in the stands by the fanbase.

And Cook is more than happy to remain in his native north west.

“I can only talk from my history, but when we moved to Portsmouth...it was a massive move,” he added.

“It’s not just my family, it’s Leam’s family, Proc, Nick (his backroom staff)...

“I’m not saying you never want to move as a manager...but it’s not great to keep moving.

“You are always looking to be professionally happy, and I think sometimes behind the scenes that is a challenge.

“I’ve never managed in the Championship, my staff’s never managed in the Championship, and that’s in front of us.

“Let’s get on with it!”