Wanderers are delighted to confirm the loan signing of Nathanael Ogbeta as their first arrival of the January transfer window.
Wing-back Ogbeta joins the Whites from Championship side Swansea City on loan for the rest of the season.
As well as a taste of first-team football with the Swans, the 22-year-old also has extensive League One experience from previous spells with Peterborough United and Shrewsbury Town.
And the former Manchester City youngster now joins Wanderers’ promotion push ahead of Saturday’s trip to Carlisle United – subject to international clearance.
With Randell Williams facing a spell on the sidelines with a hamstring injury sustained during Tuesday night’s win over Cheltenham Town – which lifted Wanderers back up to third place in League One – boss Ian Evatt has wasted no time in bringing in reinforcements.
And Ogbeta arrives with the ideal attributes to aid the Whites’ challenge.
The pacy, predominantly left-sided player spent a decade in the Academy set-up at the Etihad Stadium, making a dozen appearances for City’s U21s in the EFL Trophy and being capped by England at up to Under-20 level.
He then joined Shrewsbury in January, 2021 and made over 50 League One appearances for the Shrews – twice featuring against Wanderers – ahead of a move to Swansea City 12 months later.
After a couple of Championship appearances and an outing in the Carabao Cup for the Swans, his next chance of regular first-team football came with Peterborough.
Ogbeta moved on loan to London Road in the 2023 January transfer window and went on to make 20 appearances as a key member of Darren Ferguson’s side as they reached the League One play-offs last season.
The Salford-born defender didn’t feature in Peterborough’s semi-final loss to Sheffield Wednesday due to injury before returning to action with Swansea’s Under-21s towards the end of last year and reclaiming his place in the first-team squad.
Ogbeta was again on the bench for Swansea in their FA Cup fourth-round tie at Bournemouth last night (Thursday) before linking up with the Whites to strengthen Evatt’s squad for the final three months of the season.
The Wanderers’ boss is hoping to make a number of additions ahead of next week’s transfer deadline and is pleased to have Ogbeta – who takes squad number 17 – on board as the first after tracking the player for some time.
“Last season he had a really impressive spell at Peterborough,” said Evatt. “His performances were excellent. He's very much the type of player we want and need for that position. He comes in to add competition for places and to make us better and I think he does that.
“We've probably needed to make this move more urgently because of the Randell scenario but that happens in football and that's not to say they can't play together at some point as I think either could play either side.
“It's an exciting one for us. Nathanael is a player we’ve looked at for the past couple of windows who wasn't available then. He’s available to us now and we've been lucky enough to make it happen.”