Tendayi Darikwa was a regular for Nottingham Forest last season and has caught the eye of Paul Cook’s Wigan Athletic.
According to a report in The Sun on Sunday (14/07), the Latics have made an enquiry about the 27-year-old right-back.
The Latics will be under no illusions that it will be difficult to replace Reece James who was outstanding for them last season. The highly-rated 19-year-old arrived at the DW Stadium on a season-long loan from Chelsea last summer.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if the youngster was given an opportunity to impress at Stamford Bridge by Frank Lampard next season. He barely missed a game for the Latics and was named in the Championship Team of the Season.
In this case, it remains to be seen whether the Reds would be willing to do business over Darikwa. As it stands, he’s the only recognised right-back available to Sabri Lamouchi.
Had the Reds secured a deal to re-sign Sam Byram from West Ham United, it may have been a different story. But at the moment, the Reds aren’t really in a position to do business.
Not only this, but Darikwa proved he can be a valuable asset to the Reds last season. He was arguably one of the most improved players, especially under Aitor Karanka.
The right-back has missed a chunk of pre-season due to being called up to represent Zimbabwe at the Africa Cup of Nations. However, he was named in the starting line-up for the Reds against Atromitos last night.
He was an important player for the Reds last season and made a total of 31 appearances. That isn’t a bad return considering he was battling for a spot in the team against Saidy Janko, and Sam Byram towards the end of the season.
His performances don’t appear to have gone unnoticed with him reportedly being Cook’s number one target to replace James.
However, the Sun on Sunday’s report also states that the Latics could turn their attention to Alan Hutton. Interestingly, the Reds were also interested in the 34-year-old under the management of Martin O’Neill.
It’ll be interesting to see how this develops, especially if the Reds sign another right-back. For the time being though, it seems unlikely Darikwa will be departing.