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“I didn’t want to…” – Wigan midfielder Graeme Shinnie opens up on Derby exit

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Graeme Shinnie has opened up on his Derby County departure in January and revealed that he would’ve loved to stay at Pride Park. 

Derby are preparing for life in League One after suffering relegation while Shinnie’s new club, Wigan Athletic, won the third tier title and will play in the Championship in 2022/23.

The Scot was sold to Wigan for a nominal fee of £30,000 in the winter window as the East Midlands club’s administrators, Quantuma, looked to trim the wage bill to ensure the Rams could keep operating while the search for a new owner went on.

The midfielder had been named Player of the Season in 2020/21 and was a regular fixture through the first last of last term but his salary meant Derby were happy to capitalise on the Latics’ interest.

Speaking to the Daily Record, Shinnie has shed some light on his Pride Park departure and reflected on his time with the club.

He said: “It was hard at the time. I love Derby and had great relationships with the manager, staff and fans.

“And the move happened so quickly.

“My wife and kids moved back to Scotland and it was unsettling.

“On the Friday, I was told about the transfer. By Sunday I was having my medical and on Monday I trained with Wigan. The club needed it financially. And, for me, it was hard to turn down a long-term contract.

“I didn’t want to leave, I’m a fighter and I’d have loved to stay on.

“But Derby got rid of me and others which probably kept them going until the end of the season.

“It was a mad situation – but that’s life. There are people going through harder times than me.

“I’ve always been a resilient person anyway.

“But the last couple of years have definitely made me stronger because I’ve got life experience that I didn’t have before.

“And if it happens in the future I’ll know I can deal with it.”

Shinnie has struggled to make an impact at Wigan but reports have suggested that a move back to Derby will not happen this summer.

Quiz: Are these 20 Derby County transfer facts true or false?

1 of 20

Phil Jagielka left the club for a transfer fee in January.

The Verdict

Shinnie had been a really influential player for Derby under Rooney and was the club’s reigning Player of the Season so losing him was a gutting blow with the Rams chasing survival last January.

Ultimately, it helped to ensure the club could keep afloat and in that sense, you cannot criticise the decision from the administrators.

It’s interesting to hear the Scot’s reflections on his Derby exit and his time at the East Midlands club.

His comments suggest he wishes things had played out differently and you’d imagine that stance will be shared by the majority of Rams fans.


London-based sports journalist at Snack Media EFL accredited, graduate of New Associates and the University of Brighton

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: “I didn’t want to…” – Wigan midfielder Graeme Shinnie opens up on Derby exit

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