Sky Sports understands Qatari champions Lekhwiya have thwarted Wigan's hopes of signing Madjid Bougherra this month.
The 30-year-old former Rangers stopper was targeted by the Latics, who wanted to take him on loan with a view to a permanent deal in the summer.
Roberto Martinez had tried to sign Bougherra before he moved to the Middle East, and again he has been unable to land him.
With Ivan Ramis ruled out for the season due to a serious knee injury, Wigan are anxious to bolster their defensive options - but that will not be Bougherra.
"Wigan wanted a loan deal, but Lekhwiya did not think they could find a replacement so decided not to do a deal," a source close to the transfer confirmed.
Wigan are now weighing up other options, including a possible deal for former defender Paul Scharner.