James Perch is set to leave St James’ Park by the end of the week.

The 27-year-old utility man is to end his three year stay on Tyneside by joining recently relegated Wigan for a fee supposedly around the £700k mark.

If this move had happened 18 months ago, there would be widespread relief around Newcastle as they offloaded a player who had severely limited ability. However, in the last season and a half, Perch had become something of a cult hero with his battling displays and hard work and earned himself the nickname “Perchinho”.

But Perch is set to become the first transfer deal sanctioned under new Director of Football, Joe Kinnear and will link up with new Latics boss Owen Coyle to attempt an immediate return to the Premier League for the FA Cup champions.

There is still no news of any additions to the Magpies’ squad, although the saga regarding the transfer of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could end shortly, with Borussia Dortmund closing in on the signing of the Gabon international.