Wigan boss Cook hails ‘excellent’ Balogun for solid display against Cardiff

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Wigan Athletic manager Paul Cook has hailed Leon Balogun for his beautiful showing in Saturday’s 2-2 draw against Cardiff City in a SkyBet Championship clash.

The Super Eagles centre-back made his first start in 14 months following his move to the Championship side from Brighton and Hove Albion on transfer deadline day.

Kieffer Moore scored twice to put the Latics ahead with a clever back-heel on four minutes and then from the penalty spot on the stroke of half-time.

But Josh Murphy and Marlon Pack struck at the other end to ensure honours ended even, which allowed Latics to cut the gap to fourth-bottom Stoke to three points.

Balogunpaired Cedric Kipre at the heart of Wigan’s defence and was solid throughout the highly-tensed encounter.

“He’s (Balogun) obviously got a good pedigree, but I wanted to be loyal to the players who have done so well,” Paul Cook told the club website.

“Sometimes you can get too caught up with the result, but these players did so well against Leeds and Sheffield Wednesday.

“Leon is excellent. He’s composed.  He sees things a lot more quickly and senses danger, his reading of the game is excellent.”

The former Mainz O5 defender is hoping to reignite his career with the Championship side after his limited game time at Brighton.

He will hope to make his third appearance for Wigan when they take on Millwall on February 22.

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