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Former Wigan defender Juan Garcia has died aged 29

Juan Garcia made one appearance for Wigan in the League Cup against Manchester City. Credit: PA

Former Wigan defender Juan Carlos Garcia has died at the age of 29 following a battle with leukaemia, the League One club have announced.

Garcia had been diagnosed with the illness in early 2015 and remained in England until returning to his native Honduras towards the end of last year.

He had joined Latics from Olimpia on a three-year contract in 2013, following the path previously taken by fellow Honduras internationals Maynor Figueroa, Wilson Palacios and Hendry Thomas.

Though he would make just one appearance for Latics, against Manchester City in the League Cup, he featured in two of his country's games at the 2014 World Cup.

Wigan chairman David Sharpe said on wiganathletic.com: "This is such tragic news and we send our deepest condolences as a club to Juan Carlos' family and friends who have had to sit by and watch this sad story unfold over the past few years.

"We have offered what support we can but, despite the best possible treatment at Christie's Hospital, Juan Carlos has tragically not been able to beat this terrible illness.

"At just 29 years old, he was far too young to be taken and our thoughts are with his family at this sad time."

Wigan will hold a one minute silence for Garcia prior to Saturday's fixture with Peterborough.

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Cardiff boss Warnock: Wigan no threat under Joyce

Neil Warnock has been busy winning friends again Credit: PA

Cardiff boss Neil Warnock has taken a swipe at sacked Wigan manager Warren Joyce by saying he did not consider the Latics to be a "threat" once they appointed him in November.

Former Manchester United Under-21 boss Joyce was sacked on Monday after winning only six of his 24 games in charge at the DW Stadium.

Cardiff are currently 13th in the Sky Bet Championship but were a point above the drop zone, and Wigan, in 21st when Joyce took charge.

Warnock has told BBC Radio Wales he saw the move as a bad one for the Latics, however.

No disrespect but when Wigan appointed him, I was delighted. I didn't think they were going to be a threat to us.

I like Warren but you can't just put someone into the Championship who's never been there - it's nothing like youth football.

I'm in a unique situation for a manager because I'm not bothered if I get the sack - they can sack me tomorrow if they want.

If I want another job, I can get another job.

That's not being conceited, I just don't see many good managers around.

There used to be hundreds, you could name them all but the Championship is not like any other league.

– Neil Warnock
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