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Man Utd cult hero and former England star reunites with former team-mate as he starts new job with League One side

FORMER England star Tom Huddlestone has reunited with former teammate Shaun Maloney after accepting a coaching role with Wigan Athletic.

The ex-Hull City pals have linked up ahead of the new League One season as Maloney looks to get Wigan promoted to the Championship.

Getty

Man Utd cult hero Tom Huddlestone has secured a new job at Wigan Athletic[/caption]

Wigan Athletic

He will be a first-team coach alongside the returning Shadab Iftikhar[/caption]

The role is Huddlestone’s first as a senior coach, having being a player-coach for Manchester United’s youth team until May.

The 37-year-old moved to Old Trafford in a shock move two years ago and even ended up scoring for their Under 23s despite his advanced age.

But after retiring from playing for good this year, Huddlestone has now moved to Wigan for a new challenge.

The former Tottenham star knows a thing or two about the beautiful game, having made 585 career appearances.

He also won four caps for England and was renowned for his passing accuracy, as well as physical strength.

Huddlestone is joined by fellow new coach Shadab Iftikhar, who has arrived from Pakistan’s U20s and started his career at Wigan under Roberto Martinez before following the Spaniard to Everton and Belgium.

Huddlestone and Iftikhar can’t wait to get started in their new roles, with both men now heading to Hungary for Wigan’s pre-season training camp.

Huddlestone said: “I am very excited. I played with the Manager for a couple of seasons at Hull City, and to get this opportunity, I am very grateful and hopefully, I can bring a lot to the coaching staff.

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“The last two years have been really educational from a coaching standpoint.

“It’s given me the ambition as coaching is something I want to do long term, and I’m grateful to have this opportunity at the beginning of my coaching journey. 


PA

Huddlestone played alongside Maloney at Hull City[/caption]

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“The first few days I’ve been here, everyone has been keen. The Manager has everyone’s full attention and everyone is believing what we are going after this year.”

Iftikhar declared: “I am very excited and very grateful to the Gaffer for giving me the opportunity. I cannot wait to get started and hopefully, we can have a fantastic season. Wigan Athletic has always been close to my heart. 

“I started here with Roberto Martinez a long, long time ago and I am really excited to be back and to be involved in the project. 

“It’s an absolute honour to be working for this Football Club. The Gaffer has been a mentor to me, and I have learned a lot already from him, and I am very happy to working under such a top manager.”

Boss Maloney added: “I am delighted to welcome Tom and Shadab to the Football Club, who both join us with vastly different experiences. Tom has arrived following two seasons at Manchester United U21s and we also worked together at Hull as teammates.

“He is an extremely calm, but also very passionate coach and has been involved at the elite level for a long time which will help our younger players. 

“I worked previously with Shadab at Belgium and he also worked with Roberto Martinez at Everton and Wigan and therefore understands the DNA of our Club.

“He most recently was Head Coach of the Pakistan U20s side and has an incredible work ethic and is extremely passionate about coaching.

“Both will be great additions to the coaching team.”

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