Danny Fox has made a positive impact since joining Wigan Athletic from Nottingham Forest in January.
The Latics snapped up the 32-year-old defender for a fee believed to be around £300,000. Having made over 100 appearances for the Reds over a six-year period, Martin O’Neill deemed him to be surplus to requirements.
But it’s fair to say Paul Cook’s side have been the beneficiaries of this decision. Fox has been instrumental in their fight against relegation to League One since joining.
He may have only made nine appearances so far, but he has already produced a number of Man of the Match performances. The latest contender came at the weekend against league leaders Norwich City.
The Latics secured a valuable point against Daniel Farke’s side, and Fox was instrumental throughout. He helped keep the Canaries’ array of attacking talent quiet for the majority of the game.
‘Our best defender by a country mile’, ‘A real leader’
But his afternoon ended on a sour note as he was forced off through injury. The comments from Latics fans that have circulated on social media since prove how popular the defender has become at the DW Stadium.
If only Danny Fox was 5-10 year younger! #wafc
— Cal (@CalWafc) April 15, 2019
fox and naismith and evans superb today , thought clarke had one of his better games #wafc
— • (@J9ARNER) April 14, 2019
Fox, Naismith and Evans all MOTM today, Morsy played a blinder too #wafc
— Joe (@JoeBartonHunt2) April 14, 2019
Shame for Danny Fox been brilliant since coming from Nottingham Forest a real leader in this Wigan side #wafc
— Josh Bunting (@Buntingfootball) April 14, 2019
disappointed to concede that goal but would have taken the point before the game. The result and performance a big fillip going into Friday. Fox will be a big miss though if he’s out #wafc
— harvey (@harveyo01) April 14, 2019
Ain’t been Cook’s biggest fan in recent weeks, but fair play to him yesterday. Evans in the number 10 worked perfectly. Would like to see it again, presses from the front & has quality in the right areas. Clarke brilliant too. Fox our best defender by a country mile. #wafc
— Dan Rodenby (@DanRodenby) April 15, 2019
It’s fair to say that the defender needed a fresh start after such a lengthy spell at the City Ground. O’Neill added the likes of Yohan Benalouane, Molla Wagué and Alexander Milošević to his squad in January which meant someone had to go. But Fox has shown in his performances for Wigan that he isn’t far off the level of Forest’s new recruits, if at all.
Milošević looked to be an astute addition, but has been bizarrely frozen out by O’Neill since the defeat against Aston Villa. Whilst both Benalouane and Wagué have looked extremely vulnerable at the back in recent games.
Let’s not forget that the versatile defender was virtually ever-present throughout Aitor Karanka’s reign. Considering he was competing with the likes of Michael Dawson and Tobias Figueiredo at times, that isn’t a bad achievement. If the Spaniard was still at the club, he’d probably still be involved now.
It does make you wonder whether this was another questionable judgement made by O’Neill.