Wigan: Roger Espinoza granted work permit to join Latics

Sporting Kansas City midfielder Roger Espinoza

Wigan Athletic will sign Honduras international Roger Espinoza in January after he was granted a work permit.

The 26-year-old, who competed for his country at London 2012, will join on a free transfer when his contract at MLS side Sporting Kansas City expires.

"We prepared an excellent case for Roger and it is great news for us that he can now join up," Wigan manager Roberto Martinez told the club website.external-link

He becomes the fourth Honduran to play for Wigan in the Premier League.

Espinoza, who can play in defence or midfield, shares a room with Wigan's Maynor Figueroa on international duty.

He said he was thankful for Wigan's efforts in obtaining his work permit.

"This has been a dream for me to play in England and I am so grateful for the club who have worked so hard to make this happen," said Espinoza.

"I just can't wait now to join up with Maynor and all the guys and get to work."

The midfielder joined Sporting Kansas City - then known as Kansas City Wizards - in 2008, making 113 appearances and scoring two goals.

But Martinez said the player caught his eye with his international performances, both at the 2010 World Cup and the 2012 Olympics.

"He has been developing into an exciting footballer over the last three seasons in the MLS and has enjoyed terrific experiences at international level, specifically his role with Honduras in the Olympic games," said Martinez.

"The games versus Spain and Brazil in that tournament showed the winning and strong mentality that he possesses, which will be an important asset to our squad."

Espinoza scored for Honduras against Brazil in a 3-2 defeat at the quarter-final stage of London 2012.

A US citizen, Espinoza opted to play for the country of his birth and has 25 full caps in addition to his Olympic appearances. He follows Hendry Thomas, Wilson Palacios and Figueroa as Hondurans to join Wigan.

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