Leon Balogun did not make his Wigan Athletic debut on Saturday as The Latics hosted Preston at the DW Stadium, but the Center Back was named as a substitute and watched the entire game from the bench.
Balogun completed a January transfer window loan move from English Premier League side, Brighton and Hove Albion for the rest of the season.
The 31 year-old was part of the team practice session ahead of Saturday’s game against the visiting Preston and pick points as they push for their survival in the Championship.
— Leon Balogun (@LeonBalogun) February 5, 2020
However, Wigan Boss Paul Cook wasn’t going to throw the big man into the fray at the get go.
Balogun last played in a competitive game, four days into the new year in an FA Cup tie against Sheffield Wednesday, and he was subbed off during the break after an injury, according to reports.
Until then, the Nigeria international last saw action in August last year, missing 23 games due to a combination of factors.
H/T Paul Kendrick [Wigan Today] the Manager told Wigan Post the Nigerian and other January arrivals weren’t going to play a major part in Saturday’s game and were going to be eased into the team.
“I think we’ll be looking at phasing them in over the next few weeks,” he told the Wigan Post.
“With the team having two strong results on the bounce, the necessity to get players into the team’s been put on a bit of a back-burner.
“I certainly think the lads who’ve performed well latterly deserve the chance to stay in the side.”
On Matchday, Tom Barkhuizen (7′) and Daniel Johnson (48′) fired the visitors into the lead in the local derby.
Chey Dunkley (57′) reduced the deficit but it neither side would score again and it ended 2-1, with Wigan still 22nd in the table.