Pascal Feindouno has revealed that he was all set to sign for Wigan before being whisked away by Monaco.
The Guinea international was strongly linked with a return to France during the January transfer window, having previously turned out for Bordeaux, Lorient and St Etienne.
Wigan, though, appeared to be set to win the race for his signature, bringing him back to Europe following a three-year stint in the Middle East.
Roberto Martinez believed he had got his man when the 29-year-old arrived in England to talk terms, but at the last minute the African ace was lured back to Ligue 1 by Monaco.
On a hectic transfer deadline day, Feindouno told France Football: "It was sorted out just before the end of the transfer window.
"I was in Wigan's changing room when my agent called to tell me that Monaco were interested.
"I just about had time to pack my bags, catch a plane and land in Nice at 11.30pm.
"Twenty minutes later, my six-month contract was completed and faxed to the Federation at the very last minute."