Writer: Barry Worthington
Date:Tuesday August 31 2010
Wigan Athletic have signed Argentine forward Franco Di Santo from Chelsea for an undisclosed fee.
The 21 year-old arrived in Wigan last night and spent the afternoon undergoing a medical and has put pen to paper on a three year deal at the DW Stadium.
Manager Roberto Martinez, who has been tracking the striker for some time, is thrilled to have got his man. Roberto said: "Franco is an Under-20 international for Argentina," he said, "with great Premier League experience having worked at a club with the calibre of players of Chelsea, and also spending a hugely beneficial year on loan at an established club like Blackburn.
"We all feel that Franco can fulfil his potential at our football club and he`ll bring a completely different dimension to our squad with his presence, technical ability and hard-work.
"We`ve been following Franco for a long time and from his point of view it`s clear that he is desperate to play for Wigan Athletic and his desire and commitment is exactly the right attitude for our club."
Di Santo spent last season on-loan to Blackburn Rovers where he made 15 starts, scoring one goal against Burnley in October and putting in a string of very impressive performances for Rovers. He made a further seven appearances from the bench.
He first arrived in England in 2008, leaving Chilean side Audax Italiano for Chelsea and going on to make substitute eight appearances for the Blues, and impressing highly in the reserves.
On the international front Di Santo has won 25 caps for Argentina Under-20s between 2006-09, scoring five goals, and it is felt he is one of his country`s real prospects.
The young striker is delighted to be joining the Latics and said: "I am just happy that my future has been sorted out now. I can`t wait to start training, meet all my new team mates and start fighting for my place in the team.
"Roberto Martinez has big ambitions for the club and he made it clear how much he wanted me to be here. When a manager is so positive about you, then it is an easy decision to make."
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Date:Tuesday August 31 2010
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