Balogun bids Wigan Athletic, Brighton and Hove Albion farewell ahead of transfer move

Leon Balogun has sent a heartfelt farewell message to Wigan Athletic and Brighton and Hove Albion after leaving the Latics.

The Nigeria international joined the Seagulls in the summer of 2018 on a two-year deal from Bundesliga side Mainz 05.

The centre-back, however, found game-time difficult to come by as he was behind Lewis Dunk and Shane Duffy in the pecking order and only featured in eight Premier League matches for the side.

In his quest to turn around his situation, the defender teamed up with Championship side Wigan on a short-term loan contract in January.

The deal was expected to end in June but the outbreak of the coronavirus across the world ensured the season was forced into a hiatus and only returned in mid-June.

Wigan handed the Super Eagles defender a short permanent deal to enable him to complete the 2019-20 season with the side.

Balogun made a key contribution for the Latics during his time and featured in 11 games, even though they were relegated after being handed a 12-point deduction when they went into administration.

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The 32-year-old, who played his last game for Wigan in a 1-1 draw against Fulham on Wednesday, which confirmed their relegation, has taken to social media to appreciate the Latics and Brighton for the opportunities he was afforded to play for the clubs.

“I want to say thank you and goodbye to Paul Cook and his staff, the team and the whole Tics Family It’s been a very short and super intense time and I’m happy to have played my part in it,” Balogun tweeted.

“Regardless, I will always remember this as a very special time in my career, in a very special place with a very special club full of very special people. Thank you WEgan, I salute you.

“[Looking forward to my next football adventure – news coming very very soon] As things have finally come to an end on this strange season I’d like to say thank you Brighton and every soul involved for opening the door for me to Premier League football.

“I’ve felt at ‘home’ from the first second of my time with the Seagulls; beating Man United in the Amex, having you guys singing my very own chant, playing at Anfield and of course scoring against Palace in front of you are memories I’ll carry with me forever. Thank you for making my time in your beautiful city a time I will never forget!”

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