Leeds United: Wigan Athletic close in on Pearce signing

Jason Pearce.
Jason Pearce.
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LEEDS UNITED defender Jason Pearce appears to be on the verge of a move to Wigan Athletic after a fresh round of talks between the clubs.

United and Wigan are close to reaching a deal which will take Leeds’ former captain to the DW Stadium ahead of Monday’s transfer deadline.

Wigan made an initial approach for Pearce last week and have followed up that interest in the past 24 hours.

Leeds will hold out for a six-figure fee for the centre-back - signed for £500,000 from Portsmouth in 2012 - but the club look to have deemed him surplus to requirements after taking Sol Bamba on a half-season loan from Palermo last week.

Pearce is the leading appearance-maker in United’s squad but he has not started a game since a 1-1 draw at Nottingham Forest before Christmas.

He lost the captaincy in November and is believed to have been told by club owner Massimo Cellino - currently the subject of a Football League ruling banning him from running United - last month that Leeds would listen to offers for him in the January window.

Head coach Neil Redfearn is understood to be keen to retain Pearce, however, with centre-back Giuseppe Bellusci due to start a two-game ban during Saturday’s visit to Huddersfield Town and facing a serious misconduct charge from the Football Association.