Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Tuesday May 25 2010
Wigan Athletic have offered new contracts to eleven of its brightest young hopefuls and seven 16 year olds have also been recruited to the youth set up at the club.
Jon Routledge and Joe Holt have been given a year extension, whilst contract extentions have also been offered to Spanish defender and striker Roman Golobart and Abian Serano, striker Callum McMananan and left sided defender/midfielder Daniel Redmond, Jordan Mustoe has also been given a new one year deal.
Adam Buxton, Jonathan Breeze, Daniel Lambert, Jordan Rugg and defender Josh Langley have all been offered professional contracts
Latics boss Roberto Martinez has re-emphasised his commitment to developing young talent, with outstanding individual and team performances in both the Reserve and Youth teams throughout the season.
Speaking to the clubs official website Martinez said: "Over the last 12 months we`ve given a lot of attention to that group of players and we`re going to make sure that we continue developing them next season"
"I feel we should be getting players into the First-Team on a yearly basis and it`s been really refreshing to see how the Reserve and Youth Team have played this year, with their performances in the last three months of the season showing a real improvement.
"The concepts we`re trying to give them have become very clear and that is vital. In the 18-22 age-group there are players who clearly have the potential to play in the First-Team and it`ll be down to them to make it happen.
"We`ll create the right environment for them to fulfil their potential, sending them on-loan when we have to, watch them adapt to different circumstances and I`m sure the structure we have in place for them will see them develop strongly."
"At the moment I feel there is a problem in the English game in terms of the young talent coming through. We need to help the young players a little bit more and help them progress into the First Team.
"At Wigan Athletic we have some fantastic potential. Joe Holt and Jon Routledge have been playing their football in Sweden, a very demanding league, and come back having added more to their game.
"Then you look at Jordan Mustoe, and the way he`s developed over the last season means he`s deserved the place in the senior squad for the final games of the season.
"The work being done by the Centre of Excellence and everyone involved with our young players has been excellent and our focus is on continuing that work, giving players the best possible chance of progressing to the next level."
The Youth players to be released after completing their scholarships are Tommy Amos, Jonathan Crane, Steve Chiocchi, David Mayer, and Michael Jukes. Nick Meace, who was a young professional, has also not been retained.
Martinez said: "It`s the worst job in football to tell players they no longer have a future here, but hopefully they can use the lessons they have learned here to develop their careers elsewhere and we wish them all the best. The club always supports its released youngsters as well as it can."
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Date:Tuesday May 25 2010
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