Latics chief confirms talks to go ahead with Irish international.
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Wigan Athletic chairman Dave Whelan has confirmed that the club are in talks with Sunderland winger James McLean after a bid was accepted by the Black Cats, Sky Sports reports.
The Irish international was signed by former boss Steve Bruce but didn’t get a chance to establish himself at the club until Martin O’Neil took over. However, he now appears to have fallen out of favour under Paolo Di Canio and looks set to move on with Wigan now set to open dialogue.
“We have got to have discussions with his agent but we have agreed a fee with Sunderland and the lad is here talking to us now,” Whelan told Sky Sports News.
“I am sure there is interest in two or three of our players but we want to keep them all. I have told the lads that and the boss is with me and we want to keep everything we have got.
“But I have promised the players that if a big club comes in for them, I will not stand in their way and if we get the right deal, we will allow them to go.
“At present we are managing to hold onto everybody and we are just in the process of signing another new player (McClean).”
Whelan also took time to praise new manager Owen Coyle who has hit the ground running since taking over from Roberto Martinez, who left the club over the summer. Coyle has overseen a dramatic overhaul of the squad as they prepare to bounce back to the Premier League at the first attempt as well as competing in the Europa League.
“We were sorry to lose Roberto but we have got to get on with it. We interviewed half a dozen good lads but we just thought Owen was the right man,” added Whelan.
“He has put a new feeling into the club and we have 11 new players in.
“We have 56 games this season so Owen is doing the right thing and I have encouraged him to get players in.
“We will then be ready for all the competitions.”