Fondop joins Gardner in signing new Latics deal

Date published: 28 June 2024

Mike Fondop and Dan Gardner have both agreed new contracts with Latics.

Fondop has signed a new one-year contract with the club.

He has been a Latics player since joining in January 2022, and now pens a new deal after his previous contract expired at the end of last season.

The 30-year-old, who was born in Yaoundé, Cameroon, initially arrived from Hartlepool and netted 23 goals, including ten last season.

“It’s great to be back and have signed for the club for another season,” Fondop said.

“I’m very excited about the season ahead and can’t wait to get started.

"I had some other offers from clubs this summer but playing for another club other than Oldham wouldn’t have felt right.

“We’ve had some good conversations over recent weeks, the coaching staff have got trust in me and it’s wonderful to renew that and my relationship with the fans.”

Fondop’s tally last season included braces in the win at Maidenhead and on the final day against Wealdstone.

He also made significant contributions in the wins over Barnet, Hartlepool and the winner at Dorking.

Manager Micky Mellon said: “Mike is a really good guy and is definitely someone who can make an impact for us in this league.

“We want more from Mike, he is certainly capable of producing that, and we’ll be pushing him on to ensure we see the best of his attributes.

“We’ve had conversations with Mike and we have identified areas to work on which mainly focus on consistency.

"We all know that, when Mike has his day, he is very difficult to play against at this level.”

Gardner has signed a one-year contract extension to remain at Boundary Park.

He began his second spell with the club in the summer of 2022, will remain at Latics after agreeing new terms.

The 34-year-old has continued to bring guile and craft to the Latics midfield, making 33 starts and 11 substitute appearances since rejoining, scoring five goals.

“I couldn’t wait to get the contract signed and I’m really looking forward to the new season now,” Gardner said.

“The aim on a personal level is to kick on from where I finished last season.

"I had a good run of games and was able to chip in with a few goals, so I want to be able to continue with good performances in that manner.

“It’s a massive season coming up for us as a team.

"We should have made the play-offs last season, but with the players who are here and those coming in, I don’t see why we shouldn’t be ahead of where we were last season.

“We’ve seen over the last few years that there are some very competitive sides in this league but our job is to try to be better than everyone else and it is all on us now.

“All I’ve ever wanted to happen at Oldham is to be part of a successful team and give the fans a good season.

"I know the club inside-out and I just want good things to happen, so I really hope this is the season.”

It was in the summer of 2017 that Gardner first joined Latics, making a big impression at Boundary Park, only to sustain a serious injury.

He joined Wigan in 2020, featuring 40 times, before spending the last season with Doncaster.

Boss Mellon said: “Dan is a top professional who loves the football club and we’re pleased to sign him again for next season.

“His quality and technical ability are there for all to see and it was a no-brainer to offer him a new deal.

“Dan is a great person to have around the club, he sets the perfect example to every player and his experience and ability will be important for us as we look ahead to the new season.”

Meanwhile, Scott Davies has joined Latics as the new first team goalkeeper coach.

Davies (37), the former Tranmere and Fleetwood goalkeeper, arrives at Boundary Park as part of Mellon’s backroom team ahead of the new campaign.

The Latics first team squad will return for pre-season training on Monday (July 1).

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