Wigan Athletic is proud to present its new scholars for the 2014-15 season, who will begin working at the Club next month.
After a rigorous recruitment campaign, Wigan Athletic Academy Director Gregor Rioch and his team of coaches have selected the boys they wish to bring into the two year scheme, which will see them represent
the Under 18s team initially, with the possibility of progressing into the Development Squad and First Team.
Rioch is delighted to have beaten off several clubs in securing highly promising Wales Under 16 goalkeeper Kelland Absalom, who has been with Cardiff City, and left and right wingers respectively Matthew Rimmer and Alaster Redmayne, both from Liverpool. Absalom’s arrival is subject to international clearance as he comes from a separate federation.
Other players to have progressed through the Wigan Athletic Academy are defenders Luke Burke, Arnie Baxendale and Alex Lingard, midfielder Josh Gregory and striker James Barrigan.
Rioch said: “It’s always a very difficult choice to make as we only have very limited spaces available. We need to choose the boys coming through our system who in our judgement are best equipped to progress, while also trying to recruit lads who become available elsewhere and we feel can add something to the group.
“In many instances, we need to convince them that Wigan Athletic is the best choice in front of other clubs and it shows how we are developing as a club that we can compete in an area where the potential between clubs is so intense.
“They have done very well to reach this level but the real hard work starts because the higher up you climb the footballing ladder, the tougher it gets. However, to have the likes of Callum McManaman and Lee Nicholls as regular members of the first team squad shows that we are a club that rewards potential if players seize their opportunities.”
The new scholars will join the second year scholars already at Wigan Athletic when they return for pre-season training in June.
The Club would like to welcome all eight players officially on board and wish them all the best in their future careers with us.