‘Trained this morning’ - Wigan Athletic boss denies exit of ex-Bristol City defender

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The former Bristol City loanee will not be making a return to Ashton Gate this season

Wigan Athletic boss Shaun Maloney has denied that former Bristol City defender Steven Caulker has the club, amid reports of an early departure.

Caulker joined Wigan on a free transfer on Monday, January 9 and has been at the club for 25-days. He is contracted to Wigan until the end of the 2022/23 season and was the of three signings that Kolo Toure made in his 59 days in charge before being sacked after nine games.

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English Football League journalist Alan Nixon, who writes for The Sun, as well as running his own Patreon page, hinted on Twitter that Caulker’s time at the DW Stadium could hae been coming to an end. Wigan boss Maloney however denied that the 31-year-old had left and said that he trained this morning.

“He trained this morning,” said Maloney to the official club website. He did part session and part rehab. Steven came back after a couple of days off after the last match and then had a muscle injury on the first day back training. When I arrived he spent the first four or five days with rehab team and he will be due back training tomorrow.

Caulker played and started in both matches against his former club Cardiff City and Luton Town. He was at Turkish outfit Fatih Karagumruk before making the move back to England.

Caulker's 14-year playing career started with Tottenham Hotspur, and he had loans with Yeovil Town, Bristol City and Swansea City, and during his time at Ashton Gate, he played 30 times for the club and scored two goals. He left North London permanently to join Cardiff in 2013 but their relegation a year later meant he joined Queens Park Rangers and he played 50 times, before being loaned out to Southampton and later Liverpool, where he was deployed as a striker at one point by Jurgen Klopp.

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After his contract at QPR came to an end in 2017, he joined Scottish club Dundee, and was subject of a move from Norweigan outfit Rosenborg, but instead opted to leave the club on a free transfer. Since Janury 2019 he has been playing in Turkey first for Alanyaspor, helping them qualify for the Europa League qualifies before a move to giants Fenerbache, where he didn't make an appearance, and was instead loaned out to Gaziantep. His contract was cancelled a year early by Fenerbahce and he joined Fatih Karagumru on a two-year deal but in December 2022 it was cancelled just six months in and he was free to join Wigan.

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