Wigan acquire Charlie Kelman on loan from QPR

Ball in net

American youth international Charlie Kelman has joined Championship side Wigan Athletic Credit: None

American youth international Charlie Kelman has joined Championship side Wigan Athletic on loan from Queens Park Rangers until the end of the season.

The 22-year-old is Shaun Maloney's third signing of the January transfer window, following the recent arrivals of Luke Chambers and Charlie Goode.

The American striker spent his formative years with his boyhood club FC Dallas in Texas, USA, before moving overseas and progressing through the academy of Southend United.

Kelman made a memorable professional league debut with Southend in 2018, scoring a goal from inside his own half.

The then 17-year-old went on to make 31 appearances in blue and white, tallying up 6 goals before transferring to Queens Park Rangers.

A loan spell at Gillingham in the 2021/22 season saw him further establish himself as one to watch in the EFL, making a total of 29 appearances across all competitions.

In 2023, the young striker helped Leyton Orient win the Sky Bet League Two title while on loan, scoring 7 goals in 46 appearances across all competitions.

The striker, who has represented the United States at U19 and U20 levels, will now join the Latics with ambitions of a successful end to their 2023/24 campaign.

Commenting on his move to the DW Stadium, Charlie Kelman told Wiganathletic.com: "It’s an amazing feeling. I’ve played here in front of these fans before, and it’s a massive club. Everyone knows what Wigan Athletic is about, and I feel very privileged to be here. I can’t wait to get going."

First Team Manager Shaun Maloney told Wiganathletic.com: "I am delighted that we’ve managed to sign Charlie. He’ll be a great addition to the group, and I am looking forward to working with him.

“He has a different profile to our other number nines and will add a new dynamic to our frontline. He has a lot of strong attributes, and I am really happy to have him here.”