Haugaard returns to Stoke

Jakob Haugaard
Jakob Haugaard

On-loan keeper Jakob Haugaard has left Wigan Athletic and returned to parent club Stoke City.

That means Matt Gilks, a fellow January arrival, will be restored to the team for Saturday’s do-or-die clash with Cardiff City at the DW Stadium.

Haugaard has picked up a shoulder injury, prompting him to cut short his time in Wigan and return to the Potteries for treatment.

The development comes just days after another shaky performance from the big Dane in the 2-1 loss at Brighton.

Only a mixture of poor finishing and desperate defending prevented the Premier League-bound side from taking full advantage on the scoreboard.

It was the third game in a row that Haugaard had looked shaky since replacing Gilks in the starting line-up, believed to be due to the terms of his loan agreement.

Interim boss Graham Barrow, who had struggled to mask his unease at the situation, delivered the update at his weekly press conference at Euxton on Friday morning.

“Jakob’s torn his shoulder, which is quite a nasty injury,” admitted Barrow.

“He’s gone back to Stoke for treatment, and I believe he’s been ruled out for the rest of the season.

“That means Gilksy’ll be back in, so it’s not a problem for us.

“Matt’s a fantastic character. He accepted the situation that waas thrown at him like a man, and he’s more than ready to play.

“I think he’s been fantastic signing for this football club.

“He’s a throwback really to the type of players I used to play with.

“He’s one of those lads who lifts the dressing room, and the whole place on a day-to-day basis.

“And obviously he’s a very good goalkeeper as well.”