By Dylan Childs

17th Sep, 2020 | 1:37pm

Exclusive: Wigan Athletic open talks to sign Hibernian defender

Wigan Athletic have opened talks with Hibernian over a loan deal for defender Tom James, Football Insider can exclusively reveal.

The 24-year-old still has two years remaining on his contract at Easter Road but is not in manager Jack Ross’ plans this season.

A recruitment source has told Football Insider that the Latics want to sign the right-back on loan and are in negotiations with Hibs over a deal.

The Welsh defender signed for the Scottish Premiership side on a free transfer from Yeovil Town in July 2019 but has failed to establish himself in Jack Ross’ side.

He made just 12 appearances during his debut campaign in Scottish football having struggled with an ankle injury.

The full-back’s 96 appearances for Yeovil Town yielded an impressive eight goals and five assists.

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James rose up the ranks at his boyhood club Cardiff City and made one Premier League appearance for the Welsh giants – albeit a one minute cameo against Chelsea.

In 2014 he earned a call up to the Wales Under-19 squad and played the full 90 minutes in a 3-2 defeat against Portugal.

Wigan are in the market for a new right-back following the sale of Nathan Byrne to Derby County after Football Insider revealed that the Rams wanted Byrne to replace Jayden Bogle who joined Sheffield United earlier this month.

The Latics have undergone wholesale changes since they entered administration – a host of first team players have been sold and Paul Cook has left his position as manager of the League One club.

James would bring some much-needed experience to a very young Wigan side, led by caretaker manager Leam Richardson, despite having predominantly played in League Two and the Scottish Premiership.

In other Wigan Athletic news, it can be REVEALED that Huddersfield Town and Rotherham are plotting a move to sign free-agent attacker who recently left DW Stadium.